All posts tagged trafficking

Rise in UK trafficking, slavery and exploitation

Published September 30, 2014 by misty534


The Home Office ran TV adverts earlier this year to highlight modern slavery, including prostitution

The number of people trafficked for slavery or other exploitation in the UK has risen sharply to more than 2,700, the National Crime Agency (NCA) says.

The rise includes people lured to the country after meeting people via online dating or job recruitment sites.

Romania remains the most likely country of origin for victims, followed by Poland and the UK.

The NCA says trafficking does not have to involve crossing international borders.

Investigators say the rise is partly down to better reporting, including an increase in the number of children feared to be victims of sexual exploitation gangs.

False benefit claims

Overall, the agency says there has been a 22% jump in the number of identified suspected victims of trafficking between 2012 and 2013.

The 2,744 suspected victims, thought to be the tip of the iceberg, include 602 children.

The NCA says there has been a surge in reports of sexually exploited children – from 38 to 128 – in the wake of high-profile abuses cases in Rotherham and elsewhere.

Investigators also found cases of adults forced into prostitution, labour exploitation, domestic servitude, or compelled to commit crimes such as making false benefit claims.

Victims by country of origin
Romania 307
Poland 239
UK 193
Albania 192
Nigeria 158
Slovakia 143
Vietnam 138
Hungary 136
Lithuania 104
Thailand 89

More than half of the Romanians in the figures were being exploited for sex, according to the NCA’s annual intelligence assessment.

People from Poland were the most likely victims of labour exploitation – forced to work in agriculture, construction, factories and car washes.

Almost all of the 55 children who were being used to make false benefit claims originated from Slovakia, the report says.

The NCA says victims were being trafficked from Eastern Europe on the expectation of legitimate work which never materialised.

‘Marked with tattoos’

In some cases women travelled to the UK with men who they thought were their boyfriends – only to be coerced into prostitution.

Some victims had initially responded to online dating sites or job adverts.

The NCA report adds: “There is limited information available to suggest that traffickers mark potential victims with tattoos, with various symbols signifying ownership or to show that a victim is over 18.

“Information also suggests that victims may be marked with numbers, but the meaning of these numbers is not known.

“Various sources indicate that tattoos are used globally to mark victims of trafficking for sexual exploitation by traffickers and pimps, but the extent to which this is used in the UK is not known.”

Liam Vernon, head of the NCA’s human trafficking team, says: “Put very simply, you brand cattle – and that’s how traffickers view people, as a commodity to buy and sell.

“Human trafficking for the purposes of exploitation is an insidious and complex crime and much of the exploitation is hidden from view.”

Fear and control

Mr Vernon says trafficking has “nothing to do with crossing borders”, and any recruitment for prostitution, forced labour, slavery or servitude is exploitation.

Speaking about the British victims, he adds: “With UK girls, we see them groomed, we see them recruited, we see them moved around, we see them kept by gangs for sexual exploitation, gratification, or financial gain.

“For UK men, we see that happen, recruited by abduction, fear, controlled, for purpose of slavery, for purpose of labour.”

The government’s Modern Slavery Bill is currently before Parliament and expected to become law before the 2015 general election.

Ministers say it simplifies complex laws on exploitation and increases the maximum sentence to life.

The bill also proposes to ensure victims cannot be prosecuted for most offences committed while being controlled – and receive reparations from their abusers.

Labour says it will create a “specific offence of serious exploitation”.

It says this will make prosecutions easier and prevent the “undercutting of local workers and responsible businesses by the exploitation of low-skilled workers from Europe”.

BBC News


Published April 14, 2013 by misty534



A CONVICTED sex beast is facing trial in the Philippines for abusing two children as young as ten after using his UK passport to get into the country.

Oil worker David Wakefield, 51, who holds British and New Zealand citizenship, had only just been released from jail on previous sex charges.

The paedo Brit has now been charged with four counts of child sex assault and trafficking.

Prosecutors claim he had sex with two girls – aged 10 and 12 – in a hotel in the Filipino city of Davao last October.

Wakefield used his UK passport to travel to the Philippines on at least two occasions following his release from a 19-month sentence for child sex offences in Australia in February last year. 

He was able to enter the Philippines despite reportedly being on an international watch list of known criminals.

It is understood he may have used the passport in the hope of avoiding detection at border controls as he has no known convictions in Britain.

He had also obtained an emergency Kiwi passport in Singapore a week before his arrest.

The Foreign Office last night refused to confirm reports that Wakefield was able to renew his UK passport on release from jail.

A spokesman said: “We are aware of the arrest of a British national in the Philippines. We stand ready to provide consular assistance.”

Ruth Lagamon, of Davao City Police, said: “Wakefield is accused of charges of child abuse and trafficking for each victim – four charges in total.

“We don’t have a trial date yet as we are waiting for a subpoena from the court.”

Wakefield previously pleaded guilty to child sex offences in 2011 in Darwin, Australia.

He groomed an 11-year-old girl on the internet by sending her more than 150 emails.

He had previously been given a four-year jail term in 2009 for sexually abusing a seven-year-old girl.

Paedophile jailed for international child prostitution charges

Published March 19, 2013 by misty534


A ‘manipulative’ and ‘obsessive’ paedophile who paid a poor Filipino family to force their children to perform sex acts over the internet has been jailed for eight-and-a-half years.


Timothy Ford, 52, of Burghley Street, Kettering, faced 23 charges over two indictments, including several charges of making indecent images of a child, and arranging or facilitating the prostitution of a child.

Ford was in contact with a family in the Philippines who he would pay to arrange live ‘shows’ of young boys performing sexual acts – with the youngest being six years old. Ford would watch this over Skype and record the footage, Northampton Crown Court heard yesterday, Monday.

He would also speak to the children over Yahoo Messenger and other internet chatrooms.

Mary Loram, prosecuting, told the court that Ford was in contact with other paedophiles from across the world on the internet and he would share footage and advice with them over a file sharing website.

Ford also had plans to buy a property in the Philippines, which would have been an internet cafe with accommodation above. Mrs Loram added: “His plan was to use his internet cafe for a place for him, and others, to meet children.”

Mrs Loram added that wheelchair-bound Ford had encouraged other sexual offenders to get in contact with the family he exploited in the Philippines and had talked to them about his plans to buy a property. He had even joked about the property with another paedophile who had asked him if it was going to be called ‘paedophiles’ vacations’.

Ford was arrested in June 2011 and was released on bail and was subsequently arrested again in May 2012. The court heard how, even after his initial arrest, Ford had continued to record, and download, explicit videos and images of young children.

Several electronic items were seized from Ford’s home including two laptops, a PC tower and several recordable DVD disks. More than 50 files were recovered from the disks, which was mainly footage recorded from a webcam, and several other images, videos and texts were discovered on the other electrical devices – including 648 indecent images of children aged between one and eight.

Ford received a suspended sentence for similar offences in 1992 and was jailed in 2001 after he was discovered with 24,000 indecent images of children, 450 videos and 3,000 explicit text documents.

However, in mitigation, Ford’s counsel Christopher Strachan, told the court that Ford now acknowledged that he ‘needs help’ and would try to change.

However, the notion was rejected by Judge Rupert Mayo as he passed sentence. He told the court that he thought Ford had ‘exploited’ the poverty of his victims in the Philippines and his offending had ‘snowballed’ after his initial arrest in June 2011.

Judge Mayo told Ford he was: “Manipulative, obsessive and blinkered in your attitude towards prepubescent boys.”

He added: “There is no doubt in my mind that you do pose a significant risk.”

Judge Mayo sentenced Ford to eight-and-a-half years and imposed an extended licence period of six-and-a-half-years once he was released. He told the court that Ford would remain on a supervision order for the rest of his life and would have to serve at least two-thirds of sentence before he could face a parole board.

He also ordered the seizure and destruction of the computer, laptops, computer devices, storage and recordable DVDs.

Northampton Telegraph