Malawi Police in Balaka are keeping in custody five men suspected to have been on their way trafficking a total of 74 people to the Republic of South Africa.
The five were arrested during wee hours of 12 July 2016 by a team of police officers who were on night duties conducting Patrols and Mounting abrupt roadblocks within Balaka Township.
According to Balaka Police Station Operations Officer (SOO) Superintendent Gideon Chisale who was also the leading officer in the Patrol Team, the traffickers were intercepted at a roadblock mounted near Mount Meru Filling Station along the Liwonde-Chingeni Road.
The group was travelling in two vehicles a FAW Van registration number MPR 866 GP and a Toyota two tone Registration number KK6417.
A search conducted in the vehicles revealed that there were 74 passengers on board of which 11 were women.
When asked to produce travel documents, only 20 out of the total figure produced passports.
In the meantime, the five suspects comprising of two drivers and three facilitators namely Obra Thomas 45, Abdul Adam 40, Rafiq Amadu 35, Allan Leman 26 and Keizi Kawatira 25, are still in police custody pending a court appearance where they will answer charges of Trafficking in Person contrary to Section 14 under the Human Traffic Act.
All the five suspects hails from Mangochi.
Meanwhile, Police in the district is appealing to all those intending to travel abroad to make sure that they have proper travel documents to avoid problems that arise in the hosting countries due to lack of travel documents .