Japanese man arrested in Manila for smuggling woman to sex club

people smuggling
Jiro Saito gave his victim a fake marriage certificate so she could travel to and work in a sex club.

A Japanese man has been arrested in Manila for attempting to smuggle a woman out of the Philippines to work at a sex club.

National Bureau of Investigation Director Dante Gierran identified the suspect as Jiro Saito, who also goes under the names of Saito San and Ken Suzuki.

Gierran said today (Thursday, July 26) that Saito, aged 47, was arrested by operatives of the NBI’s International Airport Investigation Unit at his office at Dexdan Travel Consultancy Services in Malate on Tuesday.

Saito — who has lived in the Philippines for 23 years — has been subjected to inquest proceedings by the Department of Justice for violating Republic Act 6955 (the Mail Order Bride or Matching Filipino Woman for Marriage) and RA 9208 as amended by RA 10364 (the Expanded Trafficking in Persons Act of 2012).

The arrest stemmed from a complaint filed by Maria Therese Kyla Serafico who was prevented by officials from boarding a flight to last Sunday. Officers spotted different birth dates in her passport and marriage certificate to a certain Atsushi Takahashi.

Serafico told investigators that Saito had facilitated her travel as well as her marriage certificate even though no marriage had taken place with Takahashi.

Saito had told her she could use the marriage certificate to pass through and legitimise her stay in as an ‘entertainer’ at a nightclub owned by Takahashi. Serafico told investigators that she was not allowed to refuse requests for sexual services, even though she had originally be told she would only be serving drinks.

Following his arrest, Saito — who is married to a Filipina and is fluent in Filipino — told investigators that he had not known that the papers he furnished were forged.

Police are now hunting for Saito’s accomplices, including Takahasi, Angelica Hernandez, Takashi Sugano and Nancy Sugano.

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