Indonesian police uncover child exploitation racket in Bali

"As many as 12 girls, aged between 13 and 15 years, were employed as therapists at the spa," Commissioner Umar Surya Fana stated.
Jakarta (ANTARA News) - The Indonesian National Police have exposed a child exploitation racket at a spa in Bali, Head of Sub III Directorate General of the Crime Agency of the Criminal Investigation Police, Commissioner Umar Surya Fana stated.

"As many as 12 girls, aged between 13 and 15 years, were employed as therapists at the spa," Fana revealed here on Monday.

The commissioner remarked that the police were investigating the case involving the perpetrators, who were exploiting the girls and were responsible for the establishment of the company.

The case unfolded when the police received an initial tip-off on the alleged trafficking of people in one of the spas on Bali Islands.

The police then conducted a search operation and found two 14-year-old girls at the spa.

"During the operation, we found 12 girls working as therapists at the spa. The girls are from Lampung, Central Java, East Java, and Kalimantan," he remarked.

The perpetrators will face multiple charges of violating the Child Protection Law, with a minimum sentence of five years and the Human Trafficking Law, with a minimum prison term of three years.

"We do not want the judges to sentence the perpetrators to three years in prison," he affirmed.

He pointed out that the victims were deceived by their recruiters, who lured them with salaries of up to Rp20 million per month and a bonus amounting to Rp100 thousand for each therapy.

"The victims are free to return to their homes whenever they want," he remarked.

Fana noted that the children, in reality, earned only Rp6 million per month and received a bonus of Rp10 thousand for each therapy.

"They were forced to work 24 hours a day. They were not allowed to leave the shelter," he emphasized.

The children were taken from their respective regions and were trained in Jakarta, to be placed in Bali.

Fana said the police have identified three suspects: a recruiter, owner of the temporary shelter and the exploiter.

However, the police have yet to find evidence of a syndicate as the suspects work independently.

"The victims are being rehabilitated at Balis Social Services Department. The victims will act as witnesses in this case. The police are looking for additional evidence," he explained.(*)