15 women trafficked from brothels in Murcia and Almeria freed

15 women trafficked from brothels in Murcia and Almeria freedAgents of the National Police have freed 15 women victims of trafficking in premises located in the Region of Murcia and in the province of Almeria thanks to a complaint received by e-mail trata@policia.es.

Two criminal organisations have been dismantled and 16 people have been arrested – 15 in Murcia and one in Almería – of whom seven have been remanded in custody.

The victims were vulnerable women, mainly recruited in Colombia and Ecuador, who were subsequently forced into prostitution after arriving in Spain where they were subjected to surveillance by video surveillance devices.

The police investigation began with a complaint received at correotrata@policía.es from the National Police’s Service for Victims of Human Trafficking, which also coincided in time with the statements made by several people who claimed to be victims of these networks.

The investigations carried out by the agents and directed by the Court of Instruction number one of Lorca allowed them to establish the existence of two criminal organisations, one based in Murcia and the other in Lorca, dedicated to the trafficking of women for their subsequent exploitation in brothels located in different localities of the region of Murcia and Almeria.

The two networks, which had allegedly collaborated in the past, were currently operating independently, but with a similar modus operandi.

They recruited women in a situation of vulnerability and economic need in their countries of origin, mainly Colombia and Ecuador, and convinced them to travel to our country by means of deception. During their recruitment, they helped them in the preparation of the trip and in its financing, they gave them the necessary instructions to cross the borders, and once in Spain, they transferred them to the different brothels they ran where they informed them of the real work to be carried out.

Abusive conditions
Women were forced into prostitution under burdensome and abusive conditions. In an intimidating and confining environment, they were monitored by video surveillance cameras, had to ask permission to go out on the street and could not refuse any service.

They received around 50 per cent of the profits, were forced to use narcotic substances and only in some cases were spared from sexual exploitation, but in return they were exploited for work as brothel attendants. In addition, in the case of the network based in Lorca, the exploiters rotated the victims between brothels every 15 days to ensure that the clients had new women available.

Seven brothels and three homes were searched, and 29,000 euros and 5,000 dollars in cash, two vehicles, several grams of cocaine, marijuana and hashish, various electronic devices and abundant documentation of interest to the investigation were seized.

No deal with trafficking
This operation is part of the National Police Plan against Trafficking in Human Beings for Sexual Exploitation. The National Police has a telephone line 900 10 50 90 and email trata@policia.es to facilitate citizen collaboration and anonymous and confidential reporting of this type of crime, with the call not being reflected on the phone bill.

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