A ruthless Libyan human trafficker has admitted to trafficking over 2,000 desperate migrants into Europe, selling thousands of girls into child sex slavery, and killing somewhere between 400 and 500 kids he kidnapped but whose deals failed to materialize.
In an interview inside a prison with award-winning British investigative journalist Ross Kemp, the trafficker behind a mask – who makes a profit of £25,000 a week in a country where the average monthly wage is £400 – confessed:
“I have trafficked three or four thousand young girls, maybe more. We go to poor communities, often Muslim or tribal, and look for real beauties. The girls are auctioned, and go up to the highest bidder. A million taka (£8500 pounds) was the most I got.
“I’ve sold girls [for sex] who are 12. I have never returned any of the children for any reason. If they try to run away, or if there’s any trouble selling them, they are killed and buried. If our bribed police can’t handle it, it goes to the CID, and then we kill the girls. We don’t count [how many we killed; about four or five hundred.”
The horror of human trafficking reduced Kemp to tears, who in 2014 backed Flourish – a British charity, which provides support to survivors of human trafficking in Northern Ireland. He told The Mirror:
“Interviewing a guy who admits to killing 400 to 500 kids but doesn’t know exactly how many – that did make me cry. Unfortunately we have to rely on agencies and NGOs like Flourish to pick up the pieces. I’ve had to look into the eyes of human traffickers. One guy in Romania referred to the girls he abused and used as footballs.”
Thousands of Libyan men and women are risking everything to get to Europe; Libya’s collapse in the years following Muammar Gaddafi’s removal has contributed to the refugee crisis. The business of moving humans has overtaken goods smuggling in Libya since 2011.
At the time of the interview, the trafficker had over 75 traffickers working for him, and he was being investigated for over 25 different offenses in a ‘business’ spanning seven years. The trafficker, who said they rely on European search and rescue missions to come and find the migrants as the boats aren’t expected to go 200 miles, told Kemp:
“I started when I was a young boy, working for a big smuggler. I was paid 500-1000 dinars to put migrants on a boat. Then I got to know some African middlemen, and so I became a proper smuggler myself. People come and they pay us money. The middleman brings 90-95 people, and amongst them there will be a captain [from an African country, probably from Gambia or Senegal], a compass man and a GPS man.”
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