The network is suspected of operating in a spate of Colombian cities, including the capital Bogota, the second-largest city of Medellin as well as Cartagena and Santa Marta. All of the suspects were wanted by Interpol on suspicion of pimping and soliciting minors for prostitution.
Six Israel citizens have been arrested after they were suspected of running a child sex trafficking ring in Colombia, according to the Latin American country’s attorney general’s office.
In all, fourteen Israelis and two Colombians were involved in operating the alleged network. The detainees include a Colombian police officer who allegedly passed classified information to one of the suspected ringleaders, Israeli Mor Zohar.
The ring members provided Israeli travellers, mainly businessmen and recently discharged soldiers, with “tourism packages” that included prostitutes, some of whom were minors.
The teens and children reportedly received between 200,000 pesos ($63) to 400,000 pesos ($126) in return for sexual services.
They even were forced to join a WhatsApp group called “Purim”, which was apparently named for the drunken celebrations related to a Jewish holiday of the same name, according to the Ynet news website.
The members of the trafficking ring are currently facing charges of murder, conspiracy, human trafficking, trafficking in minors, drug manufacturing, providing prostitution services, and money laundering.
On his Twitter page, the office of the Colombian attorney general posted a video of what it claimed were properties used by the sex trafficking ring.
The network’s members used a number of properties including a spa in Santa Marta, a hostel in Bogota, and a building in Colombia’s second-largest city of Medellin.