A COTSWOLD hotel was reportedly raided as part of the Met Police Modern Day Slavery Investigation Team’s day of action.
And the owner of Crestow House in Stow-on-the-Wold, Jason Guo, 27, is understood to have been arrested for money laundering.
The Met’s Modern Day Slavery Investigation Team, part of Specialist Crime, carried out a day of action on April 22, targeting the sexual exploitation of women at brothels in Westminster.
Officers carried out early morning warrants at seven addresses – the other six in London – with a total of six people arrested.
All six have subsequently been bailed pending further enquiries.
The arrests are part of an investigation, called Operation Huai, into an organised crime group believed to be sexually exploiting women at brothels in Westminster. The majority of victims are Chinese, however a minority are Romanian and UK nationals.
Although the police has not confirmed the raid was at Crestow House, national newspapers have widely reported this and that Guo was one of those arrested.
The force say, at the Gloucestershire address, officers seized a number of high value assets including two luxury cars, a Rolls-Royce and a Bentley, with pictures of the cars shared by the force that appeared to be parked outside the hotel.
At the London addresses, officers recovered cash and about £1million worth of assets including high value watches and paintings.
Met police say the victims are being supported by specialist officers and will be safeguarded with the assistance of partner agencies, including The Salvation Army, which will help to ensure they have somewhere safe to stay and the support they need to begin to rebuild their lives.
As well as Guo, the other arrests are a 38-year-old woman on suspicion of modern slavery and proceeds of crime offences, a 30-year-old man on suspicion of modern slavery and proceeds of crime offences, a 67-year-old woman on suspicion of modern slavery and proceeds of crime offences, a 29-year-old woman on suspicion of modern slavery and proceeds of crime offences, and a 28-year-old woman on suspicion of money laundering.
As a result of the warrants, brothel closure orders have been applied to the four premises visited.
Detective Inspector Grant Anderson, of the modern slavery investigation team, said: “I am delighted that the many months of hard work spent putting this investigation together has resulted in the arrests of six people and, more importantly, that we’ve been able to recover and support vulnerable victims.”
Detective Superintendent Tara McGovern, of the modern slavery investigation team, said: “We are committed to protecting the vulnerable and bringing those responsible for exploiting others to justice. I hope this investigation continues to raise the public’s awareness of this shocking crime and sends a clear message to those involved that we will take robust action.”
Director of anti-trafficking and modern slavery for The Salvation Army, Major Kathy Betteridge, added: “We are really grateful to the police for continuing to prioritise the protection of people being abused through slavery despite all the extra demands currently placed on them as part of their response to the pandemic.
“This means that we can reach the vulnerable people who urgently need our help.”
A Gloucestershire Constabulary spokesman said their involvement had been to support Met Police officers, as the local force, and directed us to the Met Police for further enquires.
Anyone who suspects they or some they have come into contact with may be a victim of modern slavery and in need of help, is asked to call The Salvation Army’s 24-hour confidential helpline on 0800 808 3733.
To report a suspicion or seek advice contact the Modern Slavery Helpline confidentially on 08000 121 700.