Neil Usher & Dan Thomas successfully prosecute groundbreaking Modern Slavery case – sentences totalling 32 years imposed

Four men have been convicted and sentenced to a total of 32 years for their involvement in a people trafficking ring which abused and exploited Polish workers as modern slaves.

In some of the most severe sentences imposed under the new legislation, Sebastian Mandzik received a sentence of 12 years, Robert Majewski 8 years, Pawel Majewski 7 years and Seweryn Szmyt 5 years.

The Defendants were involved in a large scale operation, which transported vulnerable people to the North East of England from Poland on the promise of well-paid work. The victims were housed in cramped conditions and forced into minimum wage jobs, with their salaries paid into bank accounts controlled by the criminal gang. Any resistance was met with violence and intimidation.

In the first case of its kind brought in the North East, the Defendants were found guilty, after a 7-week trial at Newcastle Crown Court, of offences including conspiring to transport people for exploitation, conspiring to force people into labour and conspiring to conceal criminal property in excess of £1 million.

Neil Usher and Dan Thomas were instructed by Jim Hope, Acting Head of the Complex Case Unit Newcastle.

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