7 'traffickers' held

Rab says victim sent to Libya, family forced to pay ransom

The Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) yesterday detained seven suspected traffickers on charges of illegally sending a Bangladeshi national to Libya and realising ransom from his family.

The Bangladeshi national was sent to Libya via Sudan on a “visit visa” obtained by fake documents, said Rab officials.

Victim Samar Ali of Sylhet was even sent to the North African country under a fake name “Faruq Mia,” added the Rab officials.

Following a complaint filed by his father Konu Mia, the Bangladesh Embassy in Tripoli rescued Samar on Friday from the trouble-torn Benghazi, Lt Col Khandker Golam Sarwar, commanding officer of Rab-3, told a press briefing at the Rab headquarters in Tikatuli yesterday.

The Rab-3 detained Abdul Kaiyum, 44, Khokon Ahmad, 30, Jahangir Alam, 30, Nasir Uddin, 40, Faruqul Islam Rasel, 31, Rubel Hawladar, 29, and Badal Hawladar, 35, raiding different areas in the capital and elsewhere since March 12.

The elite force said the traffickers had their cohorts in Sudan who managed a three-month “visit visa” for Faruq.

They arranged a fake passport, national identity card, birth certificate and other documents under the fake name and sent Samar to Sudan, said the Rab official.

“They held him along with eight other Bangladeshi hostages in Sudan. They also extracted Tk 2.35 lakh in ransom from his family and handed him over to the Libyan traffickers,” he added.

The traffickers boarded the victims in a truck and took them to Libya crossing the Sudanese border, he further said.

Earlier, Konu paid Tk 2.55 lakh of Tk 4.5 lakh in advance to one Kaiyum before sending Samar abroad.

The father filed a complaint in this regard as the traffickers demanded Tk 1 lakh more holding his son hostage in Benghazi.

Samar is now in the custody of the Bangladesh mission in Tripoli and is expected to return home within a month after having his passport, he said.

Samar was sent to Sudan along with four to six other Bangladeshis at that time. The other persons have yet to be identified, the Rab official added.

After taking money from the families, the traffickers in Libya involve them in painstaking works with low allowance, he said.