Cops rescue woman from Granny Backdam

- after escape from shop owner

The woman who escaped from a shop owner who was holding her against her will at Granny Backdam, at Omai, in Region Seven, has been rescued and is now safely at home in Georgetown.

The 28-year-old woman told Stabroek News that the police arrived on Sunday afternoon around 3 pm and they reached Mabura sometime during that night. She said that they spent the night there and travelled to the city yesterday.

The woman told Stabroek News that she indicated to the police that “meh ain’t want no story. All I want is to go home”.

She, however, called for the shop owner’s business to be inspected, saying it is not fit for humans to inhabit.

The shop owner had refused to return her belongings after she escaped to a nearby camp but the woman said shortly before the police arrived, she was told that she could visit and uplift her things.

Crime Chief Seelall Persaud told Stabroek News yesterday that he was aware of the case and that no arrest had been made. He said the victim has been interviewed by the police and will be interviewed further. “From the preliminary interview, it doesn’t appear that there was any trafficking in person,” he told this newspaper.

The woman had made contact with Head of the Guyana Women Miners Organisation (GWMO) Simona Broomes shortly after she escaped on Saturday.

She had subsequently explained to this newspaper that she had agreed to go into the interior location after the woman approached her and explained that she had a shop there and needed two girls to do washing and cooking. Needing the money, she decided to take the job and although the shop owner did not tell her what her salary would have been, she was promised that she would be paid.

The woman said that when she arrived at the location, she was shocked to find that it was way different to what was described to her. Saturday was the fourth day she was at the location and she explained that for two days she was given no food. On the third day, she said, the woman finished lunch at 1 pm and when she raised that the woman started to verbally abuse her.

She had related that she was not provided with water to bathe and the sleeping conditions were very poor.

Broomes, in a bid to test the system, had made a report to the Trafficking in Persons (TIP) hotline run by the Ministry of Human Services. She was subsequently told that the police could not travel into the area until Monday as all the ranks were in Georgetown.

Asked about how police respond upon receiving a TIP report, Persaud said that firstly there is an assessment of the report, followed by an assessment of the response needs.

Once this is done, he said, there is the mobilisation of resources and if they feel that “it is something that they need to respond to now…then they respond.”

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