Parents cautioned of 'pedophile rings' during festive season

Parents cautioned of 'pedophile rings' during festive season

Police are on high alert for human trafficking across the country with millions of people expected to make their way through the country’s major points of entry.

Children travelling plane

With the festive season well underway and travelers making their way to various holiday destinations, officials anticipate an increase in incidents involving human trafficking.

At Johannesburg's OR Tambo International Airport alone, at least 3.6-million passengers will fly in and out of the city.

The airport's spokesperson Betty Maloka says there are intensified efforts with police and immigration to curb human trafficking.

"For any port of entry, whenever it is peak season, anything is possible.

"In partnership with the entire security cluster, this includes human trafficking entities to ensure humans are not being trafficked," Maloka adds.


[LISTEN] Thieves target perfume as baggage tampering spikes at OR Tambo

Stolen items include perfume and other aerosols. The airport's spokesperson Betty Maloka says they've seen a spike in baggage tampering since the start of the holiday season. "The successes that we have includes a number of arrests for about ten people who been arrested and some their permits have been confiscated pending disciplinary action.

Anti-human trafficking organisation A21 says parents traveling with children are more at risk of falling victim.


According to A21's manager Katie Modrau, Kempton Park remains an area of high concern.


"Whenever you're in a public space with your child that is what could potentially be what we call a hunting ground or a hot-spot for people who are grooming or looking to get children," Modrau.


"A couple of tips that we give to parents id not to leave your child unattended or loosely supervised, be it at a beach or a water park or a mall or any child-friendly space, because there's more children and it's busy so it leads for a parents to be more distracted."


Modrau adds that pedophile rings are more prominent during the festive season.


"Those who are involved in pedophile rings and creating pedophile material they will really try insert themselves in public spaces where there are loosely supervised children.


"And it can even be just for taking pictures to use for content, naked children running around, children in bikinis and costumes running around," she warns.


Modrau provides tips on how to survive the busy time with children:

A21 has established a 'Can you see me?' campaign to raise awareness about human trafficking.

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