Modern slavery gangmaster jailed for seven years

Aaron Morby 11 months ago
Share

A Romanian man who enslaved up to 15 men, offering demolition work and then using violence to trap them, has been jailed for seven years.

David Lupu, 29, promised the men £50 per day as well as accommodation, but instead paid them just a fraction of the wage, housed them in cramped conditions and confiscated their ID papers.

Metropolitan Police detectives began an investigation – supported by CITB’s Fraud Team – in September last year, after two Romanian men reported to Forest Gate police that they had been treated like slaves after coming to work in the UK.

Inner London Crown Court sentenced David Lupu to seven years’ imprisonment after being convicted of multiple offences of holding a person in slavery or servitude.

During the trial, seven Romanian men said they had been offered jobs in July last year, but after travelling to the UK, were expected to live in a small one bedroom flat in Leyton, east London.

Up to 15 men slept wherever they could in the kitchen, bedroom, hallway and storage cupboard, on mattresses found in the street.

Victims said they were only allowed out of the house two at a time, and warned that they would be arrested if discovered.

They were told that they owed Lupu hundreds of pounds and were forced to work long hours in the demolition sector in order to repay the costs. Meanwhile, Lupu was paid a significant wage by the building site’s employers for the men’s labour.

When the men discovered their wages from the building site had not been passed on by Lupu, they confronted him, only to be beaten and threatened to be killed if they insisted on being paid before they had paid their ‘debts’.

Ian Sidney, CITB’s Fraud Investigator who assisted the Met Police investigation, said: “Modern slavery is a horrific injustice that unfortunately is becoming more commonplace in the UK’s construction industry.

“Forcing people to work illegally not only deprives people of their human rights, it also harms the reputation of the industry, puts employers at risk, drives down wages and denies employment opportunities to many others.

“CITB has been working with industry, implementing measures to ensure that modern slavery is eradicated from the UK construction industry. We will also continue working with law enforcement agencies to bring offenders to justice.”

Latest news

Burst pipe causes flash flood at Battersea Power Station site

Video: Watch dramatic footage of water pouring through major London project
11 hours ago

Wates trumpets record order book despite Brexit slowdown

9% fall in construction revenue offset by rise in residential and property services
3 hours ago

Vinci bags £100m UCL East student blocks deal

Firm secures Olympic Park twin student buildings
2 hours ago

Persimmon launches retention scheme for home buyers

New home owners can withhold cash until any build faults are sorted out
3 hours ago

Subcontractors wanted for South Coast sites

Work opportunities up for grabs at Meet the Buyer event: Register now
2 hours ago

Griffiths to restart Dawnus £14m Swansea road job

Welsh civils firm to take on Kingsway city centre scheme
21 hours ago

Hunt for £6bn Meridian Water phase 2 developer

Up to 250 affordable homes to be built in Meridian Two scheme
1 day ago

BBC construction skills blasted over EastEnders set woes

Lack of project management skills leads to £27m cost over-run and five-year delay
1 day ago

Boost your online presence – join the Enquirer Directory

New site for suppliers and buyers showcases products, services and latest stories
11 months ago

Kier slumps to £35.5m loss as problem contracts continue

Workloads wobbling in highways, utilities and housing maintenance markets
1 day ago

Go-ahead for £175m Cumbrian deep coal mine

Plans advance for Britain's first deep coal mine for 30 years
1 day ago

Hi Vis site wear launched for pregnant women

Clothing designed to make life safer and more comfortable "from bump to baby"
1 day ago

Speedy buys powered access hirer for £9.6m

Lifterz deal allows Speedy to offer nationwide powered access equipment hire
1 day ago

Build to rent specialist plans Bolton urban village

Placefirst to use in-house contractor for £27.5m scheme
1 day ago

Water winners revealed for £2bn Severn Trent spend

More contractors win first lots on AMP7 as client revamps working practices
2 days ago

Stranded Carillion chief takes helm at Kier

Andrew Davies named new Kier chief executive
2 days ago

Interserve £170m prison project to be rebid

Ministry of Justice confirms Glen Parva to be tendered as a publicly funded project
2 days ago

Cabinet Office promises Interserve subbies will get paid

Parliamentary Secretary makes pledge in House of Commons debate
2 days ago

Sir Robert McAlpine commercial director exits

Martin Pitt steps down from board after four years at group
2 days ago

Lakehouse subbies plan showdown with Sureserve bosses

Suppliers owed millions to demand answers at company AGM
3 days ago

Tolent to build first homes at £400m Leeds scheme

Builder gets foot in the door with prototype homes for Kirkstall Forge
2 days ago

Interserve subcontractors told it’s business as usual

Outsourcers circle Interserve support services division
3 days ago

Morgan Sindall wins 20-year Sellafield civils deal

Four teams named for Sellafield decommissioning project partnership
3 days ago

Hunt for quartet to deliver £700m Birmingham Uni pipeline

University is preparing to deliver phase two of its estate masterplan
3 days ago

Stepnell wins £14m Northampton Vulcan works redevelopment

Historic factory to be refurbished for business start-ups
3 days ago

Hunt starts for developer on £200m South Shields scheme

South Tyneside Council looking for housing partner and remediation specialist
3 days ago

Revamp plans for Birmingham Moor Street station unveiled

Transfer deck across the top of station will connect to all platforms
3 days ago

Interserve workers told to report for work as usual

Interserve subsidiaries to trade solvently as PLC business pre-packed
6 days ago

Interserve to file for administration as rescue rejected

Shareholders vote down rescue plan
6 days ago

Dawnus Group goes into administration

Grant Thornton now in charge of contractor which employed 700 staff
6 days ago

Contractor services