FIVE members of a Romanian family have been arrested by the Policia Nacional for forcing a disabled man to beg for 12 hours a day in the centre of Alicante.

The victim’s mother died in his native Romania and despite having no relationship with the Alicante-based family, he was brought over by coach to Spain for the sole purpose of exploitation.

The man had to beg during the summer heatwave and due to his disability, he could not move to any shade and was not provided with food or drink.

Police were told about a disabled man being threatened on the street by a gang member who claimed to be a relative.

The woman constantly visited him to pick up any money that had been donated.

Alicante’s Policia Local moved in and took him to social services to provide him with a wheelchair and some accommodation.

Just a day later, the man was back in the same spot after his alleged family picked him up from where he was staying.

The Policia Nacional were informed and arrested the Romanian family for trafficking in human beings for the purpose of begging, as well as belonging to a criminal gang.

The victim lived in constant fear of physical assault and had his identity papers taken away by the exploiters.

He’s now in a centre appropriate to his needs after being treated at Alicante General Hospital.

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