A CHINESE gang has been busted in Alicante and Barcelona as part of a crackdown on Europe’s biggest sex-trafficking and prostitution ring.
Policia Nacional raided 34 houses across the two Spanish cities, as well as in cities in Belgium, on February 7, arresting 28 individuals accused of forcing women into being sex slaves.
The sweep followed a three-year investigation that uncovered the shocking truth of how hundreds of Chinese women were lured to Europe under false pretences of legitimate jobs, only to be forced into debt bondage and prostitution.
The perpetrators used popular messaging apps to entice their victims and smuggled them into Europe using falsified EU ID documents and residence permits.
The women were then held captive, forced to work as prostitutes, and rotated between EU countries.
The investigation monitored over 3,000 online advertisements and identified over 200 victims, although the actual number of women trafficked and forced into sexual slavery is believed to be much higher.
An Operational Taskforce was set up at Europol in December 2021, bringing together the efforts of Belgium, Spain, Poland, Switzerland, and later Germany.
Six Europol officers were deployed to Belgium and Spain to assist the national authorities, and Europol also funded the deployment of two German and two Spanish investigators to the coordination centre in Belgium.
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