Man and woman arrested in Eastbourne for immigration offences
Police have searched an address in Eastbourne as part of an investigation into reported labour exploitation in Sussex.
Police said on Thursday (January 30) officers from the East Sussex Discovery Project executed search warrants at a business address in Eastbourne and a private address in Burgess Hill.
According to police, documentation, computer records and equipment were seized at both addresses.
Police said a woman aged 47 and man aged 44 were arrested at the Eastbourne address on suspicion of immigration offences and are in custody for interview and further enquiries by immigration enforcement officers.
Staff from the Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority and the Department of Work and Pensions also attended, said police.
Detective constable Amanda Snashall said, “Our enquiries focus on information that a number of men may be financially exploited and living in poor conditions, working in the catering sector in East Sussex with for example, no access to a National Insurance number and some having no access to any identity document at all.”
Police said no potential victims were identified during the searches but an investigation is continuing.
Project Discovery in East Sussex brings together local police officers, fire officers, Stop the Traffik Hastings, King’s Church and staff from local authorities, the DWP, the GLAA and local charities, all with the aim of seeing victims of modern slavery rescued and supported, and perpetrators brought to justice.
For advice and information on spotting signs of modern slavery and how to report it, visit the Sussex Police website.