Police Officers Arrested Two Bulgarians for Trafficking in Persons for Begging in France and Sweden
The special prosecution has brought charges against two persons involved in trafficking in human beings in France and Sweden for the purpose of recruiting, transporting and coercing them into begging, said the press office of the Ministry of the Interior.
The two suspects were detained on 9 October 2019 in Vidin in a joint operation of the General Directorate for Combatting Organised Crime and the Special Prosecutor's Office, with the assistance of officers of the regional anti-organised crime unit - Vidin and the Vidin Police Department.
The law enforcers conducted searches of houses and vehicles, as well as personal searches, and found and seized EUR 700, SEK 2,000, bank receipts of transfers of various amounts, cash register receipts in French and Swedish, car documents, contracts and powers of attorney, notebooks with names and amounts in euro, as well as other documents proving criminal activity. According to the evidence collected so far, the traffickers had been recruiting job seekers among low-income and low-literate population, promising work in the West. They were transported to France and Sweden, provided with miserable lodgings and food, coerced into begging, and then most of their earnings were taken away.
Numerous trafficking victims exploited by the two suspects were identified and questioned as witnesses.
By order of a prosecutor from the Special Prosecutor's Office, the two suspects were detained for up to 72 hours. On 11 October 2019, the prosecutors will ask the Special Criminal Court to impose the most severe detention measure – remand in custody.
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