Police in Germany have raided two brothels and 10 more “objects” in Berlin. With the operation, prosecutors in the German capital have stepped up their fight against human trafficking, the victims of which are mostly Bulgarians. The police operation was targeting the people behind human trafficking schemes, as well as pimps and drug dealers.
Police in Bulgaria also conducted an operation, simultaneously, according to the German Bundespolizei. Three persons in total were arrested on human trafficking charges. A spokeswoman for the German police said, a 50-year-old man was arrested in Bulgaria and two women in Berlin. Since 2013, the three suspects supposedly brought young Bulgarian women to Berlin and forced them into prostitution.
Among the places searched in Berlin, there was one porn cinema in the Kreuzberg quarter, as well as a brothel in Köpenick. Possible witnesses were also taken into custody, temporarily. Police confiscated a lot of evidence. Tax evasion is another suspicion the authorities have in this case.
In April of 2016, Berlin police had conducted a huge raid in another brothel, with 900 officers. Later, a court came to the conclusion that, in that older case, there were no grounds for human trafficking charges. The April operation was a blow to the efforts put into combatting human trafficking.
But now, the fight was stepped up again.
Swiss authorities recently announced their intention to fight this crime more intensively as well. This is not just about forcing young Bulgarian women into prostitution, but also about children, who are being forced to beg in the streets.
The Swiss daily “Neue Zürcher Zeitung” (NZZ) just published an article about Bulgarian ladies, who were forced to marry in Switzerland, and others who were forced into prostitution and beaten, when they did not earn enough money. Children forced to beg also are in danger of being exploited by criminals who produce child pornography, it says in the publication (in German).