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Thu Oct 10, 2019, 04:25 PM

Dozens caged and shackled in Trinidad drug rehab center, police say

Source: Reuters

WORLD NEWS OCTOBER 9, 2019 / 11:05 AM / UPDATED A DAY AGO

Dozens caged and shackled in Trinidad drug rehab center, police say

Linda Hutchinson-Jafar
3 MIN READ

PORT OF SPAIN (Reuters) - Dozens of people were found on Wednesday in squalid conditions, chained and in cages in a Trinidad and Tobago rehabilitation center run by a religious group for ex-prisoners and drug users, where some were tortured and held for years, police said.

Police said in a statement that 65 men and 4 women were rescued from a “modern-day slavery” operation at the Transformed Life Ministry Rehabilitation Centre in Arouca, 19 kilometers east of the capital Port of Spain. Six people at the compound were arrested.

Images taken from the Transformed Life Ministry, which were provided to Reuters by police, showed handcuffs hanging from beds and windowless cells more akin to dog kennels at a pound. The ministry was founded 19 years ago by a pastor, Glen Awong.

Police spokesman Wayne Mystar said all the people at the center were nationals of Trinidad and Tobago. Police Commissioner Gary Griffith said the situation amounted to “human trafficking” and added that the people who were rescued stated that some of them had been imprisoned for years and been tortured.

The rescued men and women, some as young as 20 and others 60 or older, were taken to health facilities for medical treatment, the police said.

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Read more: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-trinidadtobago-home/dozens-caged-and-shackled-in-trinidad-drug-rehab-center-police-say-idUSKBN1WO1XJ

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