Proactive operational activities lead to arrests on modern slavery
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Officers have been out in force this week as part of the action disturbing modern slavery in Surrey.
Officers from the Epsom Safer Neighbourhood Team have been working in partnership with the Home Office Immigration over the last two days in the Epsom area. Visits have been completed at a number of business premises in sectors highlighted as being at a higher risk of labour exploitation. These include nail bars and car washes.
At this time two persons have been identified as potential victims of modern day slavery, having been trafficked into the UK, and exploited at various locations. One person has been arrested on suspicion of offences relating to labour exploitation. The victims have been safeguarded from further harm.
In addition to this, our partner agency has dealt with four individuals for immigration offences, and will be taking action against the employers of those individuals. Enquiries are in their early stages, and the investigation will be progressed in the coming weeks.
Modern day slavery is a horrific and despicable crime. It is a significant and under reported issue, often hidden in plain sight. You can help spot the signs and report concerns to us. There are many signs of exploitation, but if something doesn’t feel or look right, report it.
Indications of labour exploitation can include:
- Poor health and safety standards
- No labour contracts
- Documents including passports and/or bank details witheld by the employer
- Excessive work hours with few breaks
- Seem under the control of another and do not speak to others
- Witholding of wages
- Threat of physical assault
- Restriction of movement
- Appear malnourished, unkempt, routinely wear the same clothes
If you suspect someone is a victim of modern slavery, please call the Modern Slavery Helpline on 0800 0121 700 or call the Police on 999.
You can also call us via 101 or alternatively, suspicions can be raised anonymously through independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.