Members of brothel gang avoid prison
A SEX trafficking gang who set up and ran brothels in towns across the country, including in a Swindon suburb, have walked free from court.
Officers found two vulnerable women when they raided a house in Longstock Court, Eastleaze, in July 2010 during a major multi-force police operation to tackle sex trafficking and prostitution in the West Country and East Anglia. Suffolk Constabulary led the raids, which saw officers from Suffolk, Wiltshire, Norfolk, Essex, and Devon and Cornwall execute five warrants at premises in Swindon, Ipswich, Norwich, Harwich, and Tedburn St Mary, in Devon.
Four people were found guilty following a four-week trial in July, while two others previously admitted the charge of conspiracy to manage or assist in the management of brothels.
On Wednesday at Ipswich Crown Court, Przemyslaw Wegrzynowski, 41, of London Road, Ipswich was given an eight-month jail term suspended for 12 months, while Eliza Bryll, 24, of Chelmsford in Essex, was given a 12-month community order and required to do 120 hours unpaid work.
Magdalena Pacula, 23, of the Hawthorns in Stroud, Gloucestershire and Jagoda Kukielka, 26, of Braintree in Essex, were both handed 12-month community orders and required to do 100 hours unpaid work.
Two other members of the gang are due to be sentenced at a later date.
The UK Border Agency, Crown Prosecution Service Complex Case Unit and the UK Human Trafficking Centre were also involved in the raids, codenamed Operation Oakland.
Specialist officers from the Serious Organised Crime Agency’s Vulnerable Persons Team were also used for their experience in interviewing trafficking victims.
A Suffolk police spokesman said after sentencing: “The modus operandi was to rent a small flat or house on a short-term lease and advertise massage or escort services in local newspapers and on the internet.
“They're anti-social and in the middle of residential areas with men coming and going at all hours, with a large number of women brought over from Poland and moved between brothels.”