The China Post news staff
The National Immigration Agency (NIA) yesterday arrested close to 50 suspects of a human trafficking and prostitution ring in one of the largest busts in recent years. Police under the NIA also rescued and booked 20 mainland Chinese women smuggled into Taiwan. The sweeping operation and arrests were made in 10 simultaneous searches and raids at various sites in the Greater Taipei area. NIA officials said cash, accounting books, name rosters of the working prostitutes, and other evidence was confiscated. The detainees included leader, Hsiung Cheng-hui, his girlfriend, stepson Lin Ying-jer, and Lin’s two wives. Hsiung was nabbed coincidentally on his 60th birthday. He and Lin had been operating the sex operations like a pyrimid marketing business. They also offered cash awards to mainland Chinese women who help recruit new members in the mainland. The group then made arrangements for phony marriages so that the women on the other side of the Taiwan Strait could come and work in Taiwan. Those recruiting more working girls were given ranks like those offered in pyramid marketing schemes. They could also get a cut of the income from the girls they recruited. Such an operation was reported to be highly effective in reducing the high turnover rate for prostitutes. While Lin’s wife in Taiwan helped run the sex business here, his mainland Chinese wife, surnamed Chang, supervised the recruitment of new members in mainland China. Chang was also picked up by police in the sweep yesterday. She had been traveling across the Taiwan Strait and only returned to Taiwan a few days earlier. Some of the girls coming to Taiwan by the group’s arrangement voluntarily worked as prostitutes.
NIA police officers said they are still investigating if there were any Chinese women forced into prostitution.