Six High Peak police officers who helped to free a man from kidnappers in the first human trafficking case of its kind in the UK have been recognised with special awards.
The six police officers were commended by the Chief Constable of Derbyshire, Mick Creedon at a special ceremony held at Derbyshire Police headquarters in Ripley.
Detective Sergeant Jonathan Lowes, Constable Rebecca Timperley, Detective Constables Martin Bottomley, Simon Rogers and Darren Gyte, Constable Paul Miller and Jenny Poole were all involved in an investigation into an allegation of kidnapping.
In 2006 two men were brought to the UK from Eastern Europe on the pretext of a better life. They were sent to work at various food packing factories in West Yorkshire and were made to open bank accounts to deposit their wages. They worked all day and were forced to do housework in the evening.
In 2007 one man escaped and after walking for several days found himself in Buxton. He lived there for two years on the streets. He then met a man who later told the traffickers where he was. This led to a kidnap on June 9 2009 and his return to Dewsbury.
Due to good police work he was found safe and uninjured the next day. Derbyshire’s team of investigators worked closely with colleagues in West Yorkshire to bring three offenders to justice.
On 26th March 2010 three men were jailed for between four and ten years for their part in the kidnapping.
It was believed to be the first successful case in the UK against traffickers who had been using solely financial exploitation of their victims.
•Inspector Erika Green, of Buxton police station, has also received a long service and good conduct medal for completing 22 years’ service.