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Five Namibian women arrested in Brazil for drug trafficking

By: Kelvin Chiringa

A total of five Namibian women were arrested at Sao Paolo airport in Brazil on charges of drug trafficking between 2016 and 2018, the head of public relations division in the Namibian police, deputy commissioner Edwin Kanguatjivi has disclosed.

He said all of the five have now been set free on parole and are doing community service in Brazil until each completes the five years sentence they received as punishment.

The women are aged between 30 and 33 years and the deputy commissioner said foreigners were recruiting mostly those in the city with promises of living in lavish hotels.

“In the case of the five, these women were all recruited in Windhoek to collect parcels of different commodities such as Brazilian hair, shoes, clothing etc. On exiting Brazil, they were apprehended at the airport, charged and ultimately sentenced to five years imprisonment,” said Kanguatjivi.

He said several times the police have warned would-be victims to excuse themselves from taking part in these syndicate, “But seemingly our message did not reach the targeted audience”.

“As such, we once again appeal to our young women to be vigilant and not to fall prey to drug dealers,” said Kanguatjivi.

How the recruiting works

Speaking to this publication, Kanguatjivi exclusively disclosed that the women are enticed by promises of a good travel experience into Brazil by recruiters who often get into Namibia.

He said the recruitment is not done in a once off meeting.

The whole process begins with the women entering into some sort of relationships with the culprits and ending up carrying illegal contraband for them.

“First and foremost they acquaint themselves with these girls as friends, giving them trips so that they become unsuspecting. All of a sudden you are promised a luxury hotel and an air ticket. Some of them never travelled before. So it’s a journey.”

“When they come back they are given parcels just to be stopped and found with drugs and getting sentenced in foreign countries,” he said.

Usually the recruiting begins in clubs, he added.

The police in the meantime are on the look-out for suspected recruiters and with these arrests, Kanguatjivi said they will make a follow up to cast the net over them.

However, the danger is that by the time the women are done serving their sentences, the foreigners would have long vanished.

“But we will follow on how they were recruited and who recruited and all that,” said the deputy commissioner.

Kelvin Chiringa

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