Police rescue over dozen abducted children in southern Nigeria

Police in Nigeria's Rivers state have rescued 15 children who were abducted in order to be trafficked.

The children, ranging from 4 years to 15 years old, were found with a 44-year-old woman claiming to be a nun in the southern state of Nigeria's Delta region, police said on Tuesday.

Police arrested the woman, Maureen Wechinwu, and said they were working to reunite the children with their parents.

"Investigation is ongoing with the view of arresting other suspects linked in the case," Eboka Friday, Rivers state commissioner of police said in the statement.

One rescued nine-year-old boy had been taken from a market in October 2020 in neighbouring Bayelsa state and had already been sold to a woman in Lagos and returned to Wechinwu, police said.

Human trafficking is common in Nigeria, according to the US State Department and non-profit organisation Pathfinders Justice Initiative, with children kidnapped or coerced into domestic labour, adultery or other forced labour.

Source: Reuters