In December 2007, a JIT was set up between the Metropolitan Police Service (United Kingdom) and the Human Trafficking Centre of the Romanian National Police to investigate cases of trafficking involving hundreds of Romanian Roma persons - mainly children – being exploited as beggars and thieves in London and in the nearby areas.
The British and Romanian law enforcement agencies had started to investigate these cases in early 2007. When they asked to be assisted by Europol and Eurojust, Eurojust suggested that they work together by establishing a JIT. The UK-Romania JIT was then initiated and funded for almost two years by the European Commission.
The specific goals of the JIT were:
- to investigate the trafficking cases
- to prosecute the criminals apprehended in the UK and in Romania
- to break the activities of the criminal networks profiting from human trafficking
- to confiscate the criminal assets
- to improve the British and Romanian police officers’ skills to identify and assist child victims.
The work of the JIT led to the identification and support of 272 victims, and the arrest of 87 criminals charged for trafficking in human beings, child neglect, money laundering, and perverting the course of justice.
Read more about the roles of Europol and Eurojust in the fight against THB for labour exploitation.