U.S.-Philippine Cooperation Leads to the Rescue of Five Children and an Arrest for Sexual Exploitation and Abuse of Children

Manila, March 9, 2018 — The U.S. Embassy in the Philippines commends the Philippine National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) Anti-Human Trafficking Division, and the Philippine National Police (PNP) Women and Children Protection Center for the arrest of Philippine citizen Anselmo Ico Jr. and the rescue of five children in Bulacan, Philippines.

The coordinated international effort came to fruition thanks in part to the deep partnership between U.S. Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Manila office and their Philippine counterparts at NBI and PNP.  HSI briefed the case as part of a State Department International Law Enforcement and Narcotics Bureau funded trip to Portland, Maine.  On the trip, which familiarized senior NBI investigators with HSI operations, NBI investigators recognized the case.  Due to HSI’s ongoing investigations and support, Philippine law enforcement agencies were able to collaborate and combine their respective investigations to apprehend the individual.

Anselmo Ico Jr. was arrested for violations of the Philippine Republic Act 10364 (RA 10364) Expanded Trafficking in Persons Act of 2012, in relation to Republic Act 10175, Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012, Philippine Republic Act 9775 (RA 9775), Anti-Child Pornography Act of 2009, and Philippine Republic Act 9208 (RA 9208) as amended by RA 10364, Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act of 2003.