Thiruvanathapuram:The Valiyathura police on Tuesday registered a case against two persons including a Catholic priest in the city on charges of human trafficking.
The priest, identified as Chancilus Femas, and a tour operator Kiran Mohanan have been accused of taking nine people to Jordan after promising them jobs on pilgrimage visa.
The police registered a case after receiving a complaint lodged from the immigration officials. The two have absconded after the police began a search for them, The New Indian Express reported.
According to police officials, the incident came to the light after the persons who had gone with them didn’t return to the country even after the lapse of time period for which the visa had been issued. “We were informed by the officials of Foreigners Regional Registration Office and they handed over a report.”
In the report it has been pointed out that the nine member team including the priest have not returned from Jordan after completion of the said period, which was the end of June.
When the priest returned to India alone in the end of June, the immigration officials became suspicious and formally lodged a complaint.
Preliminary investigation revealed that the priest had initially arranged a pilgrimage trip comprising of 19 members to the holy land in Jordan with the assistance of Kiran Mohan. But the plan was dropped after nine members couldn’t produce sufficient travel documents. Later, the rest of the team accompanied by the priest flew to Jordan on May 27 on board Air Arabia flight.
We suspect that many of the members were transported to Israel for jobs. We are collecting evidences including the address and other details of the members and are interrogating the relatives.
Meanwhile, a special team has begun a search for the priest and the tour operator. We are weighing all options to nab the accused persons. It is too early to comment more about the case as the investigation began just now,” said Jawahar Janardh, Assistant Commissioner of Police, Shankhumugham.