Interpol wants 6 Bangladeshi human traffickers

Interpol put six human traffickers of Bangladesh in their "wanted-list", on charges of deceiving jobseekers and "wrongfully confining and killing" people over ransom demands.

The step came up following the killing of 26 Bangladeshi migrant workers in a Libyan desert town Mezda in May this year.

Dhaka's National Central Bureau (NCB) Assistant Inspector General Mohiul Islam confirmed it to The Daily Star yesterday.

The traffickers are Minto Mia, 41, Shapan, 28, Tanzirul, 35, and Jafor Ekbal, 38, from Kishoreganj, Molla Nazrul Islam, 43, from Madaripur and Shahadat Hossain, 28, from Dhaka.

A Red Notice was issued following a human trafficking case filed with Paltan Police Station in June. The serious crime unit of CID's organised crime department has been investigating the case.

Following the investigation, the CID wrote to Dhaka's NCB, Bangladesh counterpart of Interpol, in October against the six traffickers when the process started.

Among them, Minto was the first to be added on the international police agency's Red Notice list of wanted fugitives on November 6. His charges were described as deceiving jobseekers and "wrongfully confining and killing" people over ransom demands.

Interpol then asked for further details against the other five. When Dhaka's NCB responded with effective answers, the names of the five traffickers appeared on Interpol's wanted list on Wednesday.

Red Notices by Interpol are issued for fugitives wanted either for prosecution or to serve a sentence. A Red Notice is a request to law enforcement worldwide to locate and provisionally arrest a person pending extradition, surrender, or similar legal action.

As many as 77 Bangladeshis are on Interpol's Red Notice list, which seeks the provisional arrest of fugitives, for prosecution or to serve a sentence, on charges that include murder, use of counterfeit money and distribution of pornography.

The CID said Bangladesh shared details of suspected human traffickers with Interpol for the first time as it seeks to stop the kidnap and killing of migrants.

Talking to Reuters, earlier, Syeda Zannat Ara, special superintendent of the CID, said these are the traffickers who trick people from Bangladesh by taking money from them with promises of jobs abroad. They then keep them hostage in Libya and torture them for more money.

"With their details up in Interpol, their movements will be restricted because they will be wanted no matter which country they go to," she said.

The trafficking ring is probably based in Libya and Italy, according to the NCB.

On the wanted list, the six were charged for "deception and alluring for suitable jobs, wrongfully confining and killing with demanding ransom by organised human trafficker with a view to unlawful gain".

On May 28, some traffickers killed 30 migrant workers, including 26 Bangladeshi nationals. The killing took place at a smuggling warehouse in Mezda, near the city of Gharyan, southwest of Libya's Tripoli. Twelve more Bangladeshis were also injured in the attack, nine of whom were repatriated.

A total of 26 cases were filed with different police stations across the country in connection with human trafficking to Libya. Law enforcers arrested at least 50 people in this regard.

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