There was a palpable sense of horror in Govanhill yesterday following a multi-unit task force operation which uncovered a human trafficking ring.
Three men and two women have been arrested and are detained in police custody in connection with alleged trafficking and related offences following a Police Scotland intelligence led operation in the Southside yesterday (Thursday, February 9).
Police Scotland officers from the Specialist Crime Division searched a number of houses in the Govanhill area and arrested the three men aged 58, 35 and 28 years along with two women aged 25 and 40 years.
Detective Inspector Steven McMillan of Police Scotland Specialist Crime Division said: “Police Scotland is committed to protecting people at risk of harm, including those who have been the victims of human trafficking.
“Yesterday’s action formed part of a joint operation with several other forces in the UK and also police in Slovakia. It was supported by partner agencies such as Europol, TARA, Glasgow City Council Social Work Department, Immigration Enforcement and COPFS.
“As part of the overall UK wide investigation 13 women, who were victims of trafficking, have been traced and with the assistance of our partners are now safe and receiving support.
“A further three women were recovered as a result of yesterday’s activity and enquiries are currently ongoing in relation to this.”
“Human trafficking cannot be tolerated and it is important that members of the public understand the impact human trafficking has on people, businesses and communities and to report any evidence of exploitation. Victims can be vulnerable from a number of factors such as poverty, war or poor education and are often targeted and subjected to abuse and forced into work where they are exploited.
“Where we identify trafficked people, we will work with partner agencies and other law enforcement agencies to support victims and to bring offenders to justice.”