FIVE people, arrested on suspicion of gangmaster offences in Milford Haven yesterday morning (May 17) have been released under investigation.
Police executed warrants at addresses in Milford Haven linked to modern day slavery.
Dyfed-Powys Police told the Milford Mercury that three women and two men were arrested, but have yet to be charged, and so have been released while the investigation continues.
The swoop was part of a multi-agency operation between Dyfed-Powys Police, the Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority, and Pembrokeshire County Council.
Detective Chief Inspector Ross Evans said: “The victims are our priority and those affected are being fully supported.
“As well as being part of the Dyfed-Powys Police action day #TotalFocus, where efforts are being concentrated on issues relating to protecting the most vulnerable in our society, it is also anti-slavery awareness week.
"Throughout the week, as well as raising awareness, we are identifying offences and supporting victims.
“In reality modern slavery can happen anywhere and there is no typical victim of slavery.
"Victims may be exposed to more than one form of abuse, but the focus today is gangmaster offences.”
Head of Operations for the GLAA Ian Waterfield added: “Time and again we see workers brought to the UK on the promised of a better life only to be exploited by ruthless criminal groups who care only about the money they can make. Our remit is to work in partnership to protect these vulnerable workers throughout the UK.
“We will continue to work side-by-side with Dyfed-Powys Police as this inquiry continues providing specialist guidance and assistance to make sure those who have offended are brought to justice.”
Signs that may help identify victims of trafficking include:
• Not having a passport or other means of identification
• They are withdrawn and refuse to talk to, or appear afraid to talk, a person in authority
• They are unable, or reluctant to give details of accommodation or other personal details
• Having limited freedom of movement
• They perform excessive housework chores and rarely leave the residence
• They have low or no salary or are permanently deprived of a large part of their earnings by another person
• Being escorted whenever they go and or return from work and other activities
• Working long hours with few or no breaks
• Sleeping where they work
• They have no privacy, sleeping in shared and over-crowded spaces
• Security measures are in place to keep them at the work place, for example locked doors and windows
• They are not dressed properly for the work they do, for example they don't have protective equipment or warm clothes.
If you suspect slavery is happening near you report it to police on 101.
In an emergency always dial 999 or call the Modern Slavery Helpline on 0800 012 1700.