Child trafficking to US:  Panel traces roots to Gujarat

Child trafficking to US:  Panel traces roots to Gujarat

The Special Investigating  Team (SIT) probing the case involving a syndicate that had illegally sent children to the United States over the last few years, has traced its roots to Gujarat.

“The investigation carried out so far identifies the roots in Gujarat. We have also established the operation of a similar syndicate in Gujarat. One of our teams will soon travel to Gujarat for more details, ” Additional Commissioner of Police (East) P Harishekharan told Deccan Herald.

The police established the roots and existence of another syndicate in Gujarat based on the analysis of the data collected from the US Consulate in Chennai, Foreigner Regional Registration Offices (FRRO), passport office and air ticketing offices.

The Bengaluru Syndicate would receive “orders”  from its counterpart in Gujarat, to bring the children to the City, prepare fake documents and ensure that the children and adults travelled to the US.

“There existed an unholy nexus among three parties - Gujarat-based couples staying illegally in the US, their relatives back in Gujarat and the syndicate in Gujarat. These couples travelled to the US for making some money and overstayed there. They requested their relatives to send their children to the US through some means. The relatives, in turn, would contact the syndicate and assign them the task for money,” he added.

One of the relatives would come to the City along with the child and be with the child till “training session” got over and the child was illegally sent to the US with some couples, said the police. One of the teams involved in the racket used to impart training to ‘parents’ on their conduct with their ‘children’ and to fake before the authorities concerned.

The investigation carried out so far has identified about 24 suspects in the syndicate of which 16 are in judicial custody at present. Teams are on the job to arrest the eight others who are at large, Harishekharan said.

About 27 children have been sent to the US so far and the children are with their parents now. A total of 20 persons travelled illegally to the US and 16 of them returned to India, while four others, who are the genuine couples,  stayed back in the  US, he said and added that the police registered a total of 13 cases.

Cops to visit US
The police are making preparations to detain the couples and their children in the US. There are  some formalities to be completed as it involves the US administration and local police. Once the formalities are done, a team is likely to visit the US, Harishekharan said.
The City police constituted an SIT headed by Harishekharan about a year ago after the racket came to light.

Uday Pratap Singh (44), a resident of Jayamahal, was the kingpin of the racket in Bengaluru. He had different teams to train the children and fake couple to behave in a family situation, to prepare fake documents, to ensure visas and passports based on fake documents. The couple would return to Indian within a couple of days after dropping the children at the US. The syndicate charged Rs 25 lakh to send one child to the US. The police arrested 16 persons on February 8 after simultaneous raids
in the City.

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