THE KTV BAR. Allegedly a prostitution den.
NAGA CITY --- Ten women were rescued by the operatives of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) in an entrapment operation conducted last week inside a KTV bar in Daet, Camarines Norte following a tip-off from an informant who told the lawmen that they were recruited to work as prostitutes.
The NBI agents raided the bar in the evening of August 6, this year. They handcuffed one Ariel Bayani, allegedly the operator-manager of Tropper’s KTV, in violation of Republic Act 10364, known as the “Expanded Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act of 2012.”
In the post-operation report filed by Special Investigator III Sonny Rex Solano, the bar, which is located at Central Plaza in Barangay Lag-on in Daet, Camarines Norte, is said to be “employing young females for the purpose of prostitution and sexual exploitation.”
The entrapment operation was an offshoot of a surveillance conducted in previous month. Finding the right moment, the NBI operatives staged rescue-entrapment operations against the 46-year-old suspect’s business establishment which “engages in the recruitment, harboring, transporting, receiving and employing young females.”
Special Investigator V Rogel G. Intia, executive officer of NBI Naga District Office, said a formal complaint was filed against the suspect for violation of RA 10364 RA 9208 or “The Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act of 2003.”
Sec. 4 (a) of RA 10364 provides that: “It shall be unlawful for any person, natural or juridical, to recruit, obtain, hire, provide, offer, transport, transfer, maintain, harbor, or receive a person by any means, including those done under the pretext of domestic or overseas employment or training or apprenticeship, for the purpose of prostitution, pornography, or sexual exploitation.”
Sec. 6 (c) of RA 9208 said that “Trafficking is deemed committed by a syndicate if carried out by a group of three or more persons conspiring or confederating with one another. It is deemed committed in large scale if committed against 3 or more persons, individually or as a group.”
Bayani’s arrest came after one of his female workers in the bar took the marked money being offered by one of the NBI agents who pretended as customer soliciting sexual favors from her.
Intia, however, said that the woman who accepted the marked money claimed that she agreed on the offer on her personal capacity, not because it was allowed by the bar management.
But the NBI official sees the woman’s explanation as pretext, saying that sexual activities really do happen inside the bar as evidenced by the number of dimly lit furtive bedrooms being made available for customers.
Solano said in his post-operation report that documents and evidences are now being prepared as the suspect, who is temporary held at the NBI detention cell, was about to be transported yesterday to the Provincial Prosecutor’s Office of Camarines Norte for inquest proceeding.
The rescued female bar workers, whose ages range from 19 to 35 years old, contemplated as victims under the law, are being processed as witnesses with the aid of the Department of Social Work and Development (DSWD).