29 sex slaves rescued in Bangkok raids

BANGKOK (AFP): Thai police commandos made raids on two houses and rescued 29 hilltribe women forced to work as sex slaves, officers said today. Six hilltribe men guarding the women, one of whom was chained by the ankle to a railing after a failed escape attempt, were arrested in the operation on Thursday, said Pol Col Sophon Pitsuthiwong. “She had been chained there for a few days,” said Sophon, who led the raid, adding that her ankle was swollen and raw. “I asked the men why she had to be chained and they said that she tried to escape by jumping out of the window a few days before,” he said. The ethnic minority women, aged between 20 and 25 years, had been sold to the slavers by their families for between 20,000 and 30,000 baht, he added. He said that the gang – led by a Thai national named Kitti Tochaichareonporn, who is still at large – drove the women to brothels, massage parlors and hotels during the night to perform sexual services. The women were constantly watched by their guards.

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