Gang that 'bought' and prostituted French minor has at least two more victims

Gang that 'bought' and prostituted French minor has at least two more victims
Several gang members were arrested on suspicion of human trafficking and prostitution of minors. Credit: Facebook

The Brussels police found at least two more victims of the gang that was arrested for "buying" a 16-year-old French girl and forcing her into prostitution after she ran away from home with her boyfriend.

On Wednesday, the police said the unidentified victim had been found and rescued from a house in Uccle, where she was being imprisoned and prostituted against her will by the gang, who arranged nonconsensual sexual encounters through an escort website, reports RTBF. She was rescued after someone she knew recognised her on the website and sounded the alarm.

The police have also found two other victims in the Brussels municipality of Saint-Gilles, where most of the seven suspects are also from, according to the public prosecutor's office. The office also stated that several girls of French origin are among the victims. It is not yet clear how many victims there are in total, as they still have to be identified, reports Het Laatste Nieuws.

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All suspects were placed under arrest for the exploitation of the prostitution of a minor, and for human trafficking, according to Willemien Baert, a spokesperson for the public prosecutor's office, reports Het Laatste Nieuws. All seven of them are in their early twenties.

Some of them are believed to be part of a larger gang, which allegedly also includes two Brussels rappers, that is known for hundreds of crimes, among which at least one rape, and setting fire to a police car.

The first suspect was arrested on 4 January, the second and third on 5 January. They appeared before the court, which extended their pre-trial detention by one month. On 11 January the fourth, fifth and sixth suspects were arrested. The seventh suspect, who was arrested on 13 January, appears on Friday.

Maïthé Chini

The Brussels Times

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