North Korean defectors escaped from their apartment in China after spending five years in the hands of a cyber sex operator. The broker who planned their escape from North Korea with job promises in China betrayed them.
One of the women who escaped from the sex ring said she had been held captive and imprisoned with a handful of other girls in a tiny apartment in northeast China and earlier escape attempts had failed, she told CNN.
Thousands of North Korean girls and women, some as young as 9 years old, are being abducted or trafficked to work in China’s multimillion-dollar sex trade, according to a report by the London-based non-profit organization Korea Future Initiative (KFI).
KFI says North Korean women are often enslaved in brothels, sold into repressive marriages or made to perform graphic acts in front of webcams in satellite towns near cities close to China’s border with North Korea.
If caught by the Chinese authorities, they face repatriation to North Korea where defectors risk torture.
Brokers make promises of jobs in China which turn out to be lies. The women usually pay brokers S$500 to S$1,000 to organise their safe passage to China.
Instead of a restaurant job, one of the cybersex chat room owner’s paid $4,500 for one of the woman who defected from North Korea. Indebted towards the owner, she had to preform for the camera.
CNN says Korean NGOs estimate that 70% to 80% of North Korean women who make it to China are trafficked, for between 6,000 and 30,000 yuan (S$890 to S$4,500), depending on their age and beauty.
Some women are sold as brides to Chinese farmers; more recently, there has been an increase in girls being trafficked into the cybersex industry.
Other defectors claim the bosses did not pay them for their ‘work’ and when they ask for the money owed to them, they get beaten and mistreated.