Sligo: Human Trafficking For Prostitution Alleged As Garda Faces Corruption Charges

18 Apr

A GARDA is facing charges of corruption after his alleged role in facilitating an illegal trafficking and prostitution operation in the west of Ireland.

The garda, who is from Sligo but who has been based elsewhere, has been suspended for the past two years and has been the subject of a long-running probe by the Garda National Immigration Bureau and the National Bureau of Criminal Investigation.

It is alleged the garda stamped and falsified documents for a Nigerian woman, who worked as a prostitute, so she could remain in the country.

It is understood he did not know she was involved with a criminal gang, which is suspected of being involved in the trafficking of women into Ireland for work in the sex trade.

However, his actions are deemed very serious and he faces a possible jail sentence if found guilty. It is understood the charges are now pending, with the Director of Public Prosecutions set to advise gardaí in the coming weeks.

It is alleged the garda compromised himself after he became friends with a Nigerian woman.

In addition to the claims that he falsified records so she could remain in the country, it is also alleged that he helped to arrange accommodation for her.

It is understood that fellow gardaí noticed irregularities in immigration paperwork submitted by migrants that had passed through his desk.

While the Garda’s alleged role meant that he was not seen as a central player in the overall operations of the gang, it has also highlighted the prevalence of online prostitution involving foreign women.

It is understood a number of women were trafficked into the country from Africa to work in the vice trade, often advertised online.

It emerged earlier this year that the number of prostitutes attending the Women’s Health Centre increased in 2010, the majority of whom were foreign nationals.

Of the 271 clients who accessed the service last year, 255 were foreign nationals.

However, it is understood that since 2008, just six women have been identified as having been trafficked here for sexual exploitation.

www.stopthetraffik.org

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