Taipei, Jan. 10 (CNA) The Taipei District Prosecutors Office indicted a couple and 12 others Friday on charges ranging from human trafficking to sex offenses, after nearly a dozen Vietnamese nationals were rescued from forced prostitution in Taiwan.
Prosecutors charged the 14 suspects for violations against the Human Trafficking Prevention Act and sex offenses under the Criminal Code.
The case goes back to November 2019, when local authorities busted a prostitution ring that forced women from Vietnam into prostitution in Taipei and Taoyuan and arrested over a dozen suspects while rescuing 11 victims.
During their investigation, Taipei prosecutors found that the ring was headed by a 53-year-old Taiwanese man surnamed Chen (陳) and counted his sons and daughters-in-law as members.
The group was joined by Chen's Vietnamese spouse surnamed Nguyen (阮), who was in charge of luring her compatriots from low-income families in Vietnam to travel to Taiwan for work as masseuses.
After their arrival, however, the women were forced into prostitution, prosecutors said, and the ring prevented them from getting away by seizing their passports and their earnings from the sex trade.
They were also beaten and threatened with death if they tried to escape, prosecutors said.
According to the Taipei office, the ring generated earnings of NT$57.10 million (US$1.90 million) from July 2018 to October 2019.