Arrests expose persistence of modern slavery in London

Arrests made by police in a number of London boroughs have shone a light-weight on the continuing existence of contemporary slavery in London.

This morning (Tuesday, February 23), officers from the Met Police carried out six separate raids throughout the capital, together with in Croydon.

Two individuals, a 25-year-old man and a 24-year-old lady, had been arrested within the raids on suspicion of “controlling prostitution for achieve and to hide/disguise/convert/switch/take away legal property”.

The person was additionally arrested on suspicion of arranging or facilitating journey of one other particular person with a view to exploitation, police mentioned.

It’s alleged the pair are concerned in “an organised crime group, which is lively in working brothels”, a spokesperson for the Met added.

Through the raids, a number of individuals had been in the meantime recognized as potential victims of human trafficking, and have since been “safeguarded” with the assistance of the authorities.

The motion exposes the persistence of situations of slavery in London and throughout the UK, virtually 200 years after its official abolition in 1833.

The variety of slavery victims in London alone is believed to have risen “ten fold in 5 years” in keeping with a report out final yr.

Newsquest South London spoke beforehand with fashionable slavery skilled Jakub Sobik from Anti-Slavery Worldwide.

He mentioned that the size of contemporary slavery within the UK was “within the tens of 1000’s”, referencing the Nationwide Crime Company.

“In 2013 the UK authorities estimated there have been round 13,000 persons are in fashionable slavery at any time.

“However that was a number of years in the past and there’s a broad understanding that the numbers are a lot increased,” he mentioned.

The size of contemporary slavery is troublesome to know exactly, largely due to its underground nature.

Its kind in twenty first Century Britain is clearer.

“It is when an individual is tricked, trapped and exploited for business or private achieve. Folks discover methods of maintaining individuals trapped and ensuring they can’t go away,” Mr Sobik mentioned.

“It may very well be completed by violence, threats, abusing positions of energy. Debt is very often concerned as a way of management.

“Pressured labour is essentially the most widespread type of slavery within the UK and that features industries akin to agriculture, development, providers like automotive washes.

“It is also home slavery, intercourse slavery or the so-called county strains drug trafficking, the place youngsters are sometimes exploited,” Mr Sobik added.

The slavery skilled identified that slavery’s clandestine nature in immediately’s society makes it all of the more difficult to fight.

“As a result of fashionable slavery is underground and that makes it rather more troublesome to deal with.

“Poverty and discrimination are concerned. For instance, migrants coming to the UK and dealing illegally with no community of assist are straightforward targets who might be taken benefit of.

“Particularly in the event that they know that coming ahead to the authorities means they are going to be criminalized for working illegally and for his or her immigration — that performs into the fingers of traffickers,” he mentioned.

“Victims are being handled as criminals manner too usually and never being given the assist they want.”

For extra details about fashionable slavery, click on right here, or if wanted name the Trendy Slavery Helpline anonymously on 08000 121 700.

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