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PHL has become a major hotspot for child trafficking —FBI

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PHL has become a major hotspot for child trafficking —FBI

The US Federal Bureau of Investigation warned that 30 percent of the pedophiles that they had under surveillance had visited the Philippines, according to a report by Maki Pulido on GMA News' 24 Oras Weekend on Saturday.

"That's an astronomical number," said FBI Special Agent Michael van Aelstyn. "It's a scary number for those of us who work on it here, to know how prevalent it is."

According to the FBI, the Philippines had become a major child trafficking hotspot in the world, with the Philippine National Police data pointing to Taguig City, Cebu, Iligan City, Pampanga, and Tarlac as major trafficking hotspots in the country.

While there were numerous ways child trafficking was effected, online sexual exploitation has been worsening. Relatives and even the parents themselves have been known to exploit their children in this manner for quick profits.

The FBI also warned that child trafficking was not limited to the homes of parents and cybersex dens. These crimes were also known to take place in internet cafes.

"Those I-cafes are a predominant place where we have child exploitation occurring, because, again, it's based on the supply and demand," explained van Aelstyn.

"The person who owns those I-cafes maybe would be willing to shut it down if the right amount of money is paid to them, so they can do whatever they need to do inside those I-cafes," he added. 

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