NEPAL — a 29 year old Nepali man, Tara Badhour Basent, was sentenced by District Court to 20 years in prison for his crime of trafficking the 14 year girl Barha Bise (not her real name) from his village some 11 years previously. He sold her to a brothel in India.
Basnet had lured two village girls (Barha Bise and her friend) with the false promise of a better life and well-paying jobs in Kathmandu. Instead, he sold her for 27,000 rupees into a life of sexual exploitation.
After 10 years in the brothel Bise was able to escape, and was taken to hospital for treatment, Eventualy she made her way back to Nepal and was given refuge at Maiti Nepal. With the help of Maiti Nepal, the plaintiff filed a legal case against Basnet alleging that he trafficked her and her (undisclosed) friend in 2002.
The accused (Basnet) had been working in Malaysia for three years, and was thus outside police jurisdiction of Nepal’s police force. But he returned to Nepal in 2012 to celebrate Tihar (festival of lights) with his family. Once inside their jurisdiction, police were able to take him into cusrtody in December 2012 and charged him with the criminal act of human trafficking under the Human Trafficking Control Law of Nepal 043 Article 8 (1) .
The most recent anti-trafficking laws in Nepal make sentencing of traffickers simpler and more direct if a confession is made during interrogation, as there was in this case. Convicted and sentenced, Basnet will now have 20 years to think about his actions. The other girl who was trafficked with Barha Bise is still missing.
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At present, survivor Barha Bise is living and working at Maiti Nepal. She feels vindicated, knowing that her trafficker is now behind bars. There are many girls and young women like her at Maiti Nepal where the legal staff fights for their rights, advocates for them, and perseveres until cases are resolved.