Two sisters detained in central Vietnam for trafficking woman to China

By Phan Anh   November 5, 2018 | 10:39 pm PT
Two sisters detained in central Vietnam for trafficking woman to China
Two sisters in the central province of Nghe An were detained by local police Sunday for allegedly human trafficking a local woman to China. Photo by Nghe An Newspaper/Tran Duc Hai
Two sisters in Nghe An Province have been detained for smuggling a woman to China 10 years ago.

A provincial newspaper reports that Lo Thi Thuong, 43 and Lo Thi Van, 48, natives of Nghe An’s Tuong Duong District, were arrested by police Sunday.

In May 2008, the sisters were asked by a local woman, who wishes to remain anonymous, for help in finding work in China.

Then, Van was living in Vietnam while Thuong in China.

The two sisters accepted the 21-year-old local woman’s request, and took her to China in July 2008. She was taken to the house of Lo Thi Thang, another sister of Van and Thuong, in China’s Hubei Province, the report said.

Thuong then contacted a Chinese man, Chang Wei, via another Chinese man called Su Vang Vang (romanized in Vietnamese). Chang Wei agreed to buy the local woman for 25,000 Chinese yuan ($3,611). The money was shared by Thuong, Su Vang Vang and Van, with Su Vang Vang getting $722, Van $430 and Thuong the rest.

The report said the woman then contacted her father in Vietnam and told him to go to Van’s house and collect money. It did not specify what this money was for or how much was meant to be paid.

Van gave the father $215 and told the father "not to press charges," the report said, adding no further information.

In 2009, the woman gave birth to a daughter with Chang Wei. In 2011, she escaped back to Vietnam, the report said, not mentioning whether or not the woman’s daughter was with her.

It said she wanted to alert Vietnamese authorities about her being trafficked, but was dissuaded by her own father because he had already received the money from Van.

Almost 10 years after being trafficked to China, the local woman only recently reported her story to police in Tuong Duong District, accusing the sisters of the crime.

In the same province in September, a 54-year-old woman was sentenced to five years in jail for trafficking her 23-year-old daughter-in-law to China as a bride for another man. Two other relatives were given jail terms of five and six years on similar charges.

Vietnam recorded 670 human trafficking victims last year, down almost half from 1,128 in 2016.

Most of the victims were uneducated women and children from poor areas, earlier reports have said.

They were sold to men seeking wives in China, Malaysia and South Korea, or just to bear children or work as prostitutes in these countries.

Besides the victims’ financial difficulties, police have said that negligence, easy immigration procedures and gender imbalance in destination countries are responsible for the surge in human trafficking.

China suffers from one of the worst gender imbalance rates in the world as families traditionally prefer male children, and high demand for Vietnamese brides among old or poor Chinese men who could not find a wife at home has exacerbated the trafficking of women.

Lawmakers have said that the process of sending Vietnamese workers abroad must be made foolproof to prevent trafficking.

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