Five women rescued as police raid suspected brothels in Birmingham

Two women and three men arrested following late-night raids

Police have rescued five women believed to be sex trafficking victims after raiding nine suspected brothels in Birmingham.

Two women and three men were arrested on suspicion of managing a brothel following the late-night raids.

Three of the buildings raided by some of the 40 officers involved in the operation were found to be empty, but evidence at the scene suggested they had also been used as brothels.

Officers from West Midlands police seized mobile phones, cash and laptops as well as paraphernalia relating to prostitution.

A video posted on YouTube by the police force shows officers bashing down a front door and storming one of the properties in the dark.

Detective Inspector Darren Haynes said in the video: "We've seized laptops, satnavs, mobile phones, there's clear evidence of large amounts of cash, receipts, the whole picture of this premises would lead me to believe that it is being used as an illegal brothel and perhaps the girls inside are being human trafficked

"The victims are lost, treated really badly and abused on a daily basis."

The raids were part of Operation Sentinel, a crackdown on sex trafficking and exploitation in the region and were launched following intelligence gathered from local residents.

As part of the operation the force is conducting a comprehensive review of the policies and procedures it uses to tackle human trafficking.

Detective Superintendent Tim Bacon said: "It's hard to believe that modern day slavery is happening in the West Midlands, but sadly it's on the increase and we're determined to put a stop to it.

"Tonight's action, first and foremost, is about protecting people who more often than not don't even realise that they are victims.

"But we're also sending out a strong message to the traffickers that they're not going to get away with using our area as a place to commit this appalling abuse."

The raids took place in the areas of Bordesley Green, Hay Mills, Acocks Green, Sheldon, Alum Rock and Moseley.

PA

News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Day In a Page

How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?

A crime that reveals London's dark heart

How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?
Meet 'Porridge' and 'Vampire': Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker

Lost in translation: Western monikers

Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker. Simon Usborne, who met a 'Porridge' and a 'Vampire' while in China, can see the problem
Handy hacks that make life easier: New book reveals how to rid your inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone

Handy hacks that make life easier

New book reveals how to rid your email inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone with a loo-roll
KidZania lets children try their hands at being a firefighter, doctor or factory worker for the day

KidZania: It's a small world

The new 'educational entertainment experience' in London's Shepherd's Bush will allow children to try out the jobs that are usually undertaken by adults, including firefighter, doctor or factory worker
Renée Zellweger's real crime has been to age in an industry that prizes women's youth over humanity

'Renée Zellweger's real crime was to age'

The actress's altered appearance raised eyebrows at Elle's Women in Hollywood awards on Monday
From Cinderella to The Jungle Book, Disney plans live-action remakes of animated classics

Disney plans live-action remakes of animated classics

From Cinderella to The Jungle Book, Patrick Grafton-Green wonders if they can ever recapture the old magic
Thousands of teenagers to visit battlefields of the First World War in new Government scheme

Pupils to visit First World War battlefields

A new Government scheme aims to bring the the horrors of the conflict to life over the next five years
The 10 best smartphone accessories

Make the most of your mobile: 10 best smartphone accessories

Try these add-ons for everything from secret charging to making sure you never lose your keys again
Mario Balotelli substituted at half-time against Real Madrid: Was this shirt swapping the real reason?

Liverpool v Real Madrid

Mario Balotelli substituted at half-time. Was shirt swapping the real reason?
West Indies tour of India: Hurricane set to sweep Windies into the shadows

Hurricane set to sweep Windies into the shadows

Decision to pull out of India tour leaves the WICB fighting for its existence with an off-field storm building
Indiana serial killer? Man arrested for murdering teenage prostitute confesses to six other murders - and police fear there could be many more

A new American serial killer?

Police fear man arrested for murder of teen prostitute could be responsible for killing spree dating back 20 years
Sweetie, the fake 10-year-old girl designed to catch online predators, claims her first scalp

Sting to trap paedophiles may not carry weight in UK courts

Computer image of ‘Sweetie’ represented entrapment, experts say
Fukushima nuclear crisis: Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on - and may never return home

Return to Fukushima – a land they will never call home again

Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on from nuclear disaster
Wildlife Photographer of the Year: Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize

Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize
Online petitions: Sign here to change the world

Want to change the world? Just sign here

The proliferation of online petitions allows us to register our protests at the touch of a button. But do they change anything?