Five de­tained af­ter po­lice anti-slav­ery op­er­a­tion

Surrey Advertiser - - Front Page -

FIVE peo­ple have been ar­rested on sus­pi­cion of mod­ern slav­ery of­fences fol­low­ing a ma­jor po­lice op­er­a­tion at five sites across three coun­ties and the cap­i­tal.

The Sur­rey Po­lice-led Op­er­a­tion Cleeve re­sulted in the ar­rests of one woman and four men from Sur­rey and Hamp­shire on Wed­nes­day.

The op­er­a­tion in­volved 95 Sur­rey Po­lice of­fi­cers, who raided five sites across Sur­rey, Hamp­shire, Berk­shire and Lon­don.

The woman and men who were ar­rested dur­ing the op­er­a­tion re­mained in po­lice cus­tody on Wed­nes­day af­ter­noon.

Ac­cord­ing to the force, Op­er­a­tion Cleeve ‘fo­cused on es­tab­lish­ing whether traf­fick­ing and labour ex­ploita­tion us­ing for­eign na­tion­als was tak­ing place at the lo­ca­tions, in­clud­ing sub­ject­ing vic­tims to phys­i­cal vi­o­lence and squalid liv­ing con­di­tions”.

Sur­rey Po­lice was aided by of­fi­cers from the Na­tional Crime Agency.

De­tec­tive Chief In­spec­tor Kerry Had­dle­ton said: “This was a com­plex piece of work to break up a po­ten­tially large scale traf­fick­ing and slav­ery op­er­a­tion.

“Mod­ern slav­ery is an of­fence that we know is hap­pen­ing around us in Sur­rey.

“Pro­tect­ing the vul­ner­a­ble and ex­ploited vic­tims of this hor­rific crime and pur­su­ing those who com­mit it is some­thing we take ex­tremely se­ri­ously.

“I urge any­one who has any con­cerns about ac­tiv­ity re­lat­ing to in­di­vid­u­als be­ing forced to work against their will for low or no wages, or be­ing con­trolled or mis­treated, to re­port it to us.”

The po­lice have asked the pub­lic to look out for signs that some­one is a vic­tim of mod­ern-day slav­ery. A po­ten­tial vic­tim may: Show signs of phys­i­cal or psy­cho­log­i­cal abuse, look mal­nour­ished and ap­pear with­drawn

Seem with­drawn or un­der the con­trol or in­flu­ence of some­one else

Live in dirty, cramped con­di­tions

Have few per­sonal pos­ses­sions, wear the same clothes and be with­out their per­sonal doc­u­ments such as pass­port

Ap­pear hes­i­tant

A force spokesman added: “Mod­ern slaves are of­ten hid­den in plain sight, work­ing in nail bars, on con­struc­tion sites, in the hos­pi­tal­ity sec­tor or in agri­cul­ture.”

If you are sus­pi­cious that peo­ple you have seen are be­ing ex­ploited, re­port it to Sur­rey Po­lice by call­ing 101.

Al­ter­na­tively you can re­port on­line or if in the event of an emer­gency, call 999. fright­ened or

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