Belgian police arrested a suspected people-trafficker in Bruges believed to be attempting to take six migrants to the UK. This triggered the wider action.
Police also confiscated drugs and cash. The successful joint operation targeted a criminal group believed to be responsible for the cross border illegal movement of migrants and refugees as well as drugs and the subsequent exploitation of the victims as low paid workers at a number of car wash businesses in Milton Keynes in the South of England.
UK’s National Crime Agency Officer based in Brussels said: “Today’s joint action with the Belgian federal Police, the Federal and Local prosecutors’ offices led to the disruption of an organised criminal group who wrongly thought the guise of legitimate businesses could mask their evils of modern slavery abuse and drugs in our society. The UK National Crime Agency will continue to work hand in glove with our Belgian partners to disrupt and dismantle organised criminals’ deeds affecting both of our societies and beyond.”