Great Britain faces an increase in the phenomenon of 'modern slavery'. The victims, many from Romania and Poland, are being treated as "cattle", sold and tattooed by groups’ members wanting to mark their property.
Thousands of people are treated "as cattle" by gangs specialized in "modern slavery" which tattoo and force them to work for very low salaries. The number of victims brought illegally to the UK has grown with 20 percent, from 2,255 in 2012 to 2,744 in 2013, according to the UK Human Trafficking Centre. Human traffickers extend their operations from prostitution and drug factories to manual washing machines and fictive charitable missions. Victims are sold and bought for only 200 pounds (256 euro) and forced to work under threatens of violence against them or their families, reports the Daily Mail in the electronic edition.
Many victims are children from East Europe brought to UK to beg on the streets, while traffickers steal their social benefits received from the state. Adults are tricked to come to work in UK, often through recruitment sites or dating agencies, with the promise of well-paid jobs or studies. But when they arrive in UK, they are forced to work as prostitutes, in illegal cannabis farms, in constructions or in isolated farms.
The victims came from 86 countries, most of them from Romania and Poland. Shockingly, 20 percent (602 victims) are children, and many of them are forced to beg, to prostitute themselves or to work as slaves in some people’s houses. There is a growing number of British victims (one of 14), many of them being homeless and vulnerable, which are fooled to work for nomadic families, or sent to Sweden and Norway, where they pave roads and alleys for 14 hours a day.
Asked about the tattooing of victims by traffickers, Liam Vernon, from the National Crime Agency (NCA) said that these symbols are used to "indicate ownership." "It’s simply a marking. You mark the cattle, I can’t explain in more precise terms. This is how offenders see people: as a good that can be bought and sold. This comes with the cost of misery and physical and psychological trauma", said Vernon.