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Kalisz. He forced a disabled person to beg. He was convicted of human trafficking

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Four years in prison for human trafficking, forcing begging and making it a source of income – this was the sentence handed down to a 49-year-old Moldovan by the District Court in Kalisz. The case came to light thanks to another disabled man who saw two men taking the blindfolded victim out of a car in front of one of the supermarkets.

The 49-year-old was arrested in October 2022 in Kalisz. The police received information that in front of one of the supermarkets there was a 50-year-old man without legs in a wheelchair who claimed that he was being forced to beg. Investigators who arrived at the address indicated that the injured party was a citizen Latvia.

He was drunk and taken away

The man taken to the police station explained that he had been in Poland for a month and was forced to beg in various supermarkets. He was deported to Poland by deception after being drunk in Riga by the accused Moldovan.

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A man with a disability was brought to the supermarket and his eyes were blindfolded during transport so that he could not identify the route and place of his detention.

He said he was forced to beg. When, according to his torturer, he earned too little money, he was beaten. Violence was also used against the patient when he asked for a break to use the toilet. The injured party did not appear in court because – as judge Marta Przybylska informed – his whereabouts are unknown due to the fact that he is homeless.

Even several thousand zlotys were taken from him a day

The prosecutor accused the defendant of human trafficking, which is punishable by 3 to 15 years in prison. According to the prosecutor’s office, the accused used the victim to beg for many hours and took all the money he earned. The daily earnings from begging amounted to several thousand zlotys. When the accused was arrested, nearly PLN 10,000 in cash was seized. zloty. The accused pleaded not guilty in court and refused to give explanations. In response to questions from his defense lawyer, he said that he met the injured party in a park in Gdańsk. He was supposed to take care of the injured party, who said that two weeks earlier, two people had brought him from Latvia and taken his passport. He gave him things and a new stroller. As he explained, he decided to collect money for his passport. For this purpose, he even called the Embassy of the Republic of Latvia in Poland to arrange a visit. From what the man had begged, he was to give the accused only for food. He said that he did not beat the injured party, did not threaten him or hold him against his will.

Witness: I immediately guessed that “something was wrong”

The witness who called the police testified in court. He’s a citizen Ukraine in a wheelchair, also with disabilities, without legs. He testified that when he saw the injured party in front of the supermarket, he immediately guessed that “something was wrong.” He testified that four years earlier, Moldovan Gypsies forced him to beg. He decided to call the police when the injured party said that he was afraid of the Gypsies, that they would hurt him and force him to work for them.

The defendant’s lawyers asked for his acquittal. In their opinion, the disabled witness who testified could engage in similar activities and earn money in a similar way. – The question is whether it was some competitive group that was begging – said lawyer Marek Deptuch. In turn, according to lawyer Grzegorz Dąbrowski, after analyzing the case files, one can have “at least great doubts about the real relationship between the injured party and the accused.” – Was it actually a relationship of dependence, consisting in the fact that the injured party, begging, did it under duress and threat, or, as the accused explained, it was part of the agreement between them, which at some point stopped pleasing the injured party and he decided to free yourself from this situation – he explained.

Prosecutor Krzysztof Dębski said that all the circumstances presented by the defense are only an adopted line of defense aimed at reducing the negative role of the accused. He said the evidence was strong and sufficient for a conviction.

The 49-year-old will be charged with crimes in Germany

Judge of the District Court in Kalisz, Marta Przybylska, found the accused Moldovan guilty of the offense he was charged with.

“He took advantage of the critical financial situation and mobility disability of the Latvian citizen, resulting from the amputation of both legs and the use of a wheelchair. He held him captive, transported him blindfolded to the markets of various retail chains and forced him to beg for many hours under his control. He also took him away all the money collected by the above-mentioned person and committed acts of violence against him, as well as unlawful threats of beating him and taking him to the forest,” said the spokeswoman, Judge Edyta Janiszewska. The court sentenced the accused to four years in prison and fined him PLN 2,000. The judgment is invalid. As established by the Polish Press Agency, the Moldovan could also have committed similar crimes in Germany. After the trial in Poland, the man will be handed over to German investigators

Main photo source: TVN24

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