Devon

Plymouth trafficking trial: Workers 'forced to urinate in bottles'

Slavery raid
Image caption The raids involved staff from the National Crime Agency

Vulnerable eastern Europeans were trafficked to Plymouth and ordered to "urinate in bottles" and "eat outside", a court has heard.

Plymouth Crown Court was told the victims from the Czech Republic were brought to the UK and forced into compulsory labour.

The jury heard victims slept on a floor and in garages while the defendants pocketed their wages.

Five people deny trafficking and other charges.

The defendants are:

  • Ruzena Tancosova, 34, of Union Street - charged with conspiracy to traffic for the purpose of exploitation, requiring a person to perform forced or compulsory labour and acting as a gangmaster
  • Petr Tancos, 35, of Ford Park Road - charged with conspiracy to traffic for the purpose of exploitation, requiring a person to perform forced or compulsory labour
  • Nela Dzurkova, 26, of Ford Park Road - charged with conspiracy to traffic for the purpose of exploitation
  • Martin Tancos, 35, of Saltash Road - charged with conspiracy to traffic for the purpose of exploitation and acting as a gangmaster
  • Katerina Kurejova, 35, of Saltash Road - charged with conspiracy to traffic for the purpose of exploitation

Judge Paul Darlow told the jury an earlier trial had to be stopped after concern about one of the interpreters.

Malcolm Galloway, prosecuting, told the court how the victims, some of whom worked as house servants, were sometimes threatened with violence or told their families at home were at risk.

The trial continues.

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