'Slave' daughter of codebreaker

One of the three 'slavery victims' is reportedly the daughter of a Second World War codebreaker, according to the Times.

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Slavery victim speaks out

There are concerns that the number of people treated like slaves in London is growing. Helping them escape their captors is just the first step in getting them to freedom.

Our Senior Correspondent Ronke Phillips has been talking to one victim - who we can't identify - who managed to escape from a life of servitude.

Police 'unpicking a story' that spans at least 30 years

What we must do is everything we can to protect the integrity of our investigation and ensure that we do not damage the collection of evidence or the chances of bringing this to a successful criminal prosecution. Equally we need to respect the needs of the victims in this case.

This investigation will take some considerable time. There are a number of lines of enquiry to follow up, numerous statements to take, and a number of exhibits to examine.

We are unpicking a story that spans at least 30 years of these women's lives, and all of this requires police activity to turn that into evidence.

Whilst that process continues we have released the suspects on bail, but they have not returned to the property where we carried out the operation yesterday.

– Commander Steve Rodhouse, Specialist Crime and Operations


Slavery case 'may take months' to debrief

Former Olympics minister Dame Tessa Jowell, who represents Dulwich and West Norwood, has been briefed by Scotland Yard detectives and Lambeth borough commanders about the case. She said:

This is a hugely complex case which will be understood through the information provided by the three women, who are now in a safe place, being debriefed by people skilled to deal with these highly traumatised individuals.

It will be important to be patient as the debriefing may take many weeks into months and only once that has been complete will we really understand how this happened, what actually happened and who knew what was going on.

It's clear from the briefings that I have had and also that the police have provided that, on the information available so far, this is not a situation that has any parallels with the Austrian or American imprisonment cases.

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Charity: 'Invisible handcuffs' show psychological control

The founder of the charity that helped the alleged slavery victims told ITV News the term "invisible handcuffs" shows "there is more psychological control over how people are kept" in domestic servitude cases.

Freedom Charity founder Aneeta Prem said, "It doesn't mean people in domestic servitude or domestic slavery are in chains or shackles".

Ms Prem added, "I think the women have gone through the most horrendous emotional trauma over the years ... and it's going to be a very long journey to get them to start to rebuild their lives".

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Entire human trafficking unit 'working on slavery case'

Detective Inspector Kevin Hyland said the whole of the Metropolitan Police's human trafficking unit - 37 officers - are now working on this investigation.

DI Hyland said: "Whilst we do not believe that they have been subjected to sexual abuse, we know that there has been physical abuse, described as beatings.

"However there is nothing to suggest that the suspects were violent to others outside of the address".

The police search of the address in south London took 12 hours and 55 bags of evidence were seized, amounting to in excess of 2,500 exhibits, he added.

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Human trafficking 'not involved' in slavery case

Police do not believe the case of three women allegedly held against their will at a house in south London falls into the category of sexual exploitation, or what is traditionally referred to as human trafficking.

"It is not as brutally obvious as women being physically restrained inside an address and not being allowed to leave," Commander Steve Rodhouse of the Metropolitan Police said.

Police are trying to understand "what were the invisible handcuffs being used to exert such a degree of control over these women", he said, adding that to label the investigation as domestic servitude or forced labour is "far too simplistic".


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Slavery 'victims' may have been seen as 'normal family'

Police investigating allegations of slavery at a house in London said that to the outside world they may have appeared to have been a "normal family".

Commander Steve Rodhouse said police are "unpicking a story that spans at least 30 years".

"This does mean that over the course of many decades the people at the heart of this investigation, and the victims, would probably have come into contact with public services, including our own", he said. "That's something we need to examine fully."

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Police call London slavery case 'unique'

Police said two suspects bailed in connection with an investigation into slavery and domestic servitude have been in the country for "many years" and that the case "so far is unique to us".

They have been arrested on suspicion of immigration offences as well as in connection with the investigation into slavery and domestic servitude, Scotland Yard said.

The victims - a 30-year-old British woman, a 57-year-old Irish woman and a 69-year-old Malaysian woman - are being looked after in a safe location.

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