Following an investigation began in October 2019 by the Immigration and Borders Service (SEF), under the coordination of the Public Prosecution of Portalegre, a charge has been made against three foreign nationals for the crimes of trafficking in human beings (12), assisting unlawful immigration (12), canvassing of illegal labour (1), undue use of the activity of an illegal staying foreign national (12) and crime for undue use of child labour.
During the investigation, called “Operation Kebab”, twelve victims of trafficking in human beings have been flagged, working in Portugal for the defendants in catering establishments, in Portalegre, Elvas and Campo Maior. It should be noted that one of the foreign nationals exploited by the defendants was underage.
The defendants would recruit foreign nationals they knew were illegally staying in Portugal, to work in their catering establishments, by imposing them excessive working hours, with no leaves or proper remuneration, placing them into accommodations with no minimum conditions, taking advantage, therefore, of their special vulnerability situation and complete economic dependency.
Moreover, it should be mentioned that during the operational action, for the compliance of judicial warrants last November, two foreign nationals have been detained, and subject to as cautionary measures the closing of those commercial establishments, regular attendances and prohibition from exiting the country.
The victims were accommodated by the competent services of the State, and, with the minimum formalities complied with, they are already duly introduced in the labour market, by which the Public Prosecution has required for financial compensations.