The Judicial Police, through the Center’s Board of Directors, with the direct intervention of the Department of Investigation and Criminal Action of Coimbra, in a joint action with the Spanish Civil Guard, have dismantled a criminal association whose purpose was to carry out crimes of trafficking in persons, in the field of labour exploitation, which have occurred in recent years
In the course of the operation, called “LUSAR”, which took place on 16 October, several domiciliary and non-residential searches were carried out in Portugal, in the areas of Sabugal, Belmonte, Covilhã and Santa Comba Dão, and in Spain, zone of Segovia, during which, through European and national arrest warrants issued by the DIAP of Coimbra, five individuals of Portuguese nationality were detained, one in Portugal and four in Spain,
The criminal organization worked with the victims in the national territory, most of them in the central zone, attracting them to attractive agricultural works in Spanish territory. However, since most of the victims were considered to be ” particularly vulnerable”, because of their social and psychological condition (people without family references, without work and with addictive behaviors), they were transported to workplaces in Spain where they did not have adequate rest, received no remuneration, and were still subject to inhuman conditions and food, remaining there at the mercy of that criminal organization, which received high revenues for the work of the victims.
In this operation and consequent materialization of search warrants and detention, in addition to investigators of the Board of the Center and the Department of Criminal Investigation of the Guard, the Judiciary Police moved a team to Spain, where he followed the actions developed there, reciprocally, the Spanish Civil Guard moved a team to Portugal to follow the actions carried out in the national territory.
In the procedures for collecting evidence, two shotguns, ammunition, various objects and documents related to the crimes practiced were found and seized.
Upon the detention in Portugal, after the first judicial interrogation of defendant held , the measure of compulsion to stay in the dwelling with electronic surveillance was applied , in addition to the term of identity and residence .
For the four detainees in Spanish territory, after being present in court, before the Spanish Judge, they await extradition to Portugal, where they will be present to the judicial authorities of the County of Coimbra, with a view to the application of coercive measures.