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Albanian man made £4,000 a day from pimpin

IC WALES (UK)

Albanian man made £4,000 a day from pimping Feb 2 2007 Gareth Rogers, South Wales Echo An Albanian man who moved to Cardiff because he spotted a gap in the sex trade market was earning £4,000 a day from trafficking his female victims.

He lured women to this country with the promise of jobs in restaurants, only to force them into prostitution in a business that netted him £110,000. Albanian nationals Argan Kanani, 22, who lived with his prostitutes in Llanedeyrn, Cardiff, and Erjon Javori, 32, of Sheffield, were jailed for a combined total of more than 12 years for trafficking four Lithuanian women to South Wales and Birmingham.

After the sentencing, at Cardiff Crown Court, DI Tony Brown, who headed the investigation, promised aftercare would be given to all the victims. At the sentencing, Judge Roderick Denyer QC said while he drew back from using an emotive word like slavery to describe what happened to the women, they were controlled and degraded.

Most thought they were coming to work in restaurants or hotels. The court heard how Kanani, who came to this country at 18, was renting a house in Queenwood, Llanedeyrn, and earning up to £4,000 a day.

Kanani said he chose to come to South Wales because Birmingham, where he had started his business, had become overrun with Eastern European sex workers. Prosecutor Robert Brown said: 'The women were all from poor Lithuanian families and easy targets for being tricked into flying here.

'In a strange country and with language problems, they submitted to the regime and were paid a pittance.' Kanani pleaded guilty to two counts of controlling prostitution for gain and was jailed for five and a half years, while Javori was jailed for seven.

DI Brown said: 'We have a mixture of women from inside and outside the EU and we will be very much led by them on what they want to do. 'Our intelligence says that this is a very small problem in South Wales, but this is certainly the biggest case we have had to deal with. And if there are any other victims out there, we would ask them to come forward.'

Sarah Walker, of the English Collective of Prostitutes, said: 'We have a problem that many women are scared to come forward because they fear they will be deported and that is worse than continuing what they are doing. 'But the authorities need to ensure that these women are given the same care and treatment that rape victims would be given and that all complaints are taken seriously.'

Cathy Owens, Amnesty International Programme Director for Wales, said: 'These women should not be treated like criminals, they should be treated as victims of a terrible crime. They need counselling, healthcare and secure accommodation. '

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