Two men have been arrested on suspicion of modern slavery offences in the construction sector following a Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority (GLAA) operation in Coventry
GLAA officers made the arrests at addresses north and east of Coventry city centre on the morning of 13 September 2018.
A 44-year-old Romanian man has been safeguarded and has entered the government’s national referral mechanism, a framework for ensuring potential modern slavery and human trafficking victims receive the support they need.
The GLAA took action following allegations from the potential victim that the suspects had been controlling his behaviour by keeping his ID, withholding his wages and threatening violence.
Both suspects, aged 49 and 38, were detained in custody and enquiries are ongoing to identify any further victims.
GLAA senior investigating officer Andy Davies said: “This operation saw us act following intelligence we received of potential labour exploitation in the construction sector.
“Modern slavery and labour abuse can come in a variety of forms and I would encourage the public to be aware of some of the key signs that someone is being exploited. Is their freedom being restricted? Is their behaviour slightly unusual? What are their living and working conditions like? Do they have control of their finances? All of these can be signs of labour abuse.
“In some cases, victims may be reluctant to share their story so any information you give can help us rescue and protect vulnerable workers.”
Anyone who has suspicion of modern slavery or labour exploitation can contact the GLAA’s intelligence team on 0800 432 0804 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.