Philippine senator seeks inquiry into POGOs overs human trafficking

POGOs remain under scrutiny.
POGOs remain under scrutiny.

Senator Gatchalian wants a probe into gaming operators’ alleged involvement in human trafficking.

The Philippines.- Senator Sherwin T. Gatchalian is calling for a senate inquiry into the potential involvement of the online gaming industry in human trafficking. It comes after an operation to rescue over 1,000 people from the Clark Sun Valley Hub in the Clark Freeport Zone. Those rescued included people of various nationalities, including from Vietnam, China Indonesia and Nepal.

Proposing Senate Resolution No. 611 Gatchalian cite data from the National Bureau of Investigation that says that 65 out out of 113 POGO-related cases investigated between 2017 and March 2023 invovled human trafficking.

Gatchalian, who has been fighting for a ban on Philippine offshore gaming operators (POGOs) said: “These syndicates could be fronting as POGO operators but are actually engaged in criminal activities such as human trafficking and scamming.”

He said POGO involvement in criminal activities harmed the country’s reputation internationally and posed a threat to public safety. The compound where the people were rescused in the Clark Freeport Zone is being investigated by the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR).

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