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Trafficked NC men rescued

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“When they got to their destination they were dropped off at the alleged recruiter who reportedly sold them off to a businessman''

Picture: Illustrative

THE HAWKS Serious Organised Crime Investigation unit, together with local police in Athlone, rescued three young men in their early twenties from two alleged human traffickers after they were reportedly picked up from their homes in the Northern Cape.

According to Hawks spokesperson, Captain Philani Nkwalase, the victims were apparently picked up by a taxi driver from their respective homes in Northern Cape after they were promised employment opportunities in Cape Town.

“When they got to their destination they were dropped off at the alleged recruiter who reportedly sold them off to a businessman in Athlone,” Nkwalase said.

“Preliminary investigations have revealed that the victims were forced to do hard labour and stayed in makeshift, unhealthy accommodation. Their pleas to be returned home were apparently met with resistance as they were told to first pay back the costs incurred.”

The suspects, both aged 63, were arrested on Monday and charged with trafficking in persons after the father of one of the victims alerted the police.