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Thread: Three Women 'held as slaves for 30 years'

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    Elite Member witchcurlgirl's Avatar
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    Default Three Women 'held as slaves for 30 years'

    Three women rescued after 'decades of slavery' in south London home

    Two people arrested by police investigating slavery and domestic servitude

    Three "highly traumatised" women have been rescued from a house in south London where they appear to have been held captive for three decades, Scotland Yard has said.


    A 69-year-old Malaysian woman, a 57-year-old Irish woman and a 30-year-old British woman were all rescued from the residential address last month by detectives from the Metropolitan police human trafficking unit.


    Two suspects a 67-year-old man and a 67-year-old woman were on Thursday arrested at the address under the investigation into slavery and domestic servitude, the force said in a statement.


    Scotland Yard said: "Police were contacted in October by Freedom Charity after they had received a call from a woman stating she had been held against her will in a house in London for more than 30 years.


    "Further inquiries by police revealed the location of the house and with the help of sensitive negotiations conducted by the charity the three women, a 69-year-old Malaysian woman, a 57-year-old Irish woman and a 30-year-old British woman, were all rescued.


    "All three women, who were highly traumatised, were taken to a place of safety where they remain."


    Aneeta Prem, founder of the Freedom Charity, said the three women were in effect kept in "domestic slavery" and felt they were not allowed to leave the house because of their fear of their alleged captors.


    There did not appear to any sexual element to the alleged captivity, Prem added.


    "One of the key things that has come up is that these three ladies were absolutely terrified by these people," she told Sky News.


    Prem said one of the woman called the charity's helpline, which led to a week of calls before the operation to release them. The contact was in secret because "they felt like they were in massive danger", Prem said. "With the help of the police we were able to get them out."
    The address where they were found was "just an ordinary house in an ordinary street that wouldn't raise any concerns with anybody else", she said, adding that neighbours did not appear to have known anything.


    The three presumed victims had access to their own rooms but were "very restricted on everything they could do", Prem said.


    The women were all together in a place of safety and were doing well, she added.


    Prem said there was concern that the women would not in the end want to leave "because obviously 30 years, being held in a very difficult situation, you become very institutionalised to a very bad way of living, so we had to ensure that when they were going to come out they didn't then decide they were going to go back in".


    At a police press conference officers said they believed the 30-year-old woman who was rescued had lived in the house her entire life against her will, and had no contact with outside world that most people would consider normal. The three women were kept under a strong degree of control, officers said. Reports said the house concerned was in the Lambeth borough area of south London.


    Detective Inspector Kevin Hyland, from the Met police's human trafficking unit, said: "We applaud the actions of Freedom Charity and are working in partnership to support these victims who appear to have been held for over 30 years. We have launched an extensive investigation to establish the facts surrounding these very serious allegations."


    He added: "A television documentary on forced marriages relating to the work of the Freedom Charity was the catalyst that prompted one of the victims to call for help and led to their rescue."

    Three women rescued after 'decades of slavery' in south London home | World news | theguardian.com
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    A*O
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    Hmmmmm. We need a lot more detail before we can snark or not.
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    this whole story is so full of WTFs.

    LONG article:
    The Communist 'Jesus': Maoist sect leader accused of keeping slaves for 30 years 'ran collective like a cult and moved into home of woman captive who later died in window fall'


    • Aravindan Balakrishnan, 73, and his wife Chanda, 67, ran communist sect
    • Community worker Dudley Heslop, 59, went to a series of Brixton lectures
    • Followers were asked to give up their families, money and property to cause
    • 'He just kind of got them to believe he was like Jesus Christ', Mr Heslop said
    • Comrade Bala, 73, and wife Chanda, 67, 'kept 3 women captive' for 30 years
    • Aishah Wahab, 69, Josephine Herivel, 57, and Rosie Davies, 30, were 'slaves'
    • Scotland Yard to interview them for the first time today - weeks after rescue

    By Rebecca Camber, Ryan Kisiel, Rebecca Evans, Nick Fagge and Martin Robinson
    PUBLISHED: 18:01 GMT, 26 November 2013 | UPDATED: 20:15 GMT, 27 November 2013
    75 shares

    Cult leader: Aravindan Balakrishnan, also known as Comrade Bala, pictured in 1997, convinced his followers he was Jesus Christ, a man who rejected his doctrine said today


    A community worker who refused to join the Maoist cult at the centre of an alleged slavery scandal says its extreme left-wing leader managed to convince his followers he was a communist Jesus Christ.
    Community worker Dudley Heslop, 59, went to a series of lectures by Aravindan Balakrishnan, 73, and has revealed today how he treated his followers like army recruits, and took their money and property for his extreme left-wing cause.

    The 73-year-old is now accused with his wife Chanda, 67, of holding three women as slaves for three decades.
    Mr Heslop said 'Comrade Bala' moved into the Battersea house belonging to Sian Davies, the mother of captive Rosie, 30, who died after mysteriously falling from a window in 1997.
    Members of his cult were forced to cut off contact with their families and faced severe discipline if they breached any of his strict rules.
    Young women were always at the heart of his revolutionary sect.
    'He would say 'I am the Christ follow me', Mr Heslop told the Evening Standard.

    'Women abandoned their careers and their futures for him. They would have to put him and the collective before their families.

    'He would take the wages of others for the collective, he was in control. They would run errands and things like that.

    'He wasn’t holding these women by force, he just kind of got them to believe he was like Jesus Christ.'
    Mr Heslop said the leader believed that China would invade Britain to 'free them' from the 'Fascists'.


    It came as it emerged police are preparing to interview the three alleged 'Lambeth slaves', Rosie and two others - a 69-year-old Malaysian, believed to be Aishah Wahab and a 57-year Irish woman, believed to be Josephine Herivel.

    Bala came to police attention after setting up a communist squat, the Mao Zedong Memorial Centre, in Brixton in 1976 where the couple ran their group, the Workers’ Institute of Marxism-Leninism-Mao Tse Tung Thought, holding lectures and film evenings.


    Witness: Dudley Heslop who escaped the Maoist Cult with his scrapbook of bulletins and teachings from the Maoist collective



    The images, from ITV News, show Balakrishnan, also known as Comrade Bala, attending the inquest into the death of commune member Sian Davies in 1997. The two women following him are believed to be the 'slaves'

    This site in Brixton was once the headquarters of the Mao Zedong Memorial Centre - which housed a communist collective run by the slavery case suspects - reportedly Aravindan Balakrishnan, 73, and his wife Chanda, 67

    Two years earlier, he had been kicked out of the Communist Party’s national executive after his faction ‘attempted to put themselves above the discipline of the party’.


    POLICE PREPARE TO INTERVIEW 'SLAVES' FOR THE FIRST TIME


    The three women allegedly held as slaves for 30 years will be formally interviewed by police for the first time today.

    Officers have had indirect contact with the trio, who it is claimed were effectively brainwashed into remaining in a political collective for more than three decades, but have had to wait until trauma experts gave them the go-ahead to take their accounts in person.
    Commander Steve Rodhouse (above right) said: 'We have not yet been able to formally interview the victims in this case so we don't fully understand the nature of the allegations.

    'We are moving to a point where we will be able to interview the victims and our plan is actually to do so today.

    'The victims are in the care of specialists who have got great experience of dealing with people who have been subject to trauma. We're working to that advice of those experts as to how best to handle those victims, to support them and of course to draw out the evidence we would need to substantiate any prosecution.'

    He said that there may have been 'many and varied offences' against the women, who were allegedly held captive at various addresses in London, but that their ordeal may not be defined as modern day slavery.

    'We need to maintain an open mind on what this particular incident is before we jump to those conclusions and labels,' Mr Rodhouse said.

    But he added: 'The crucial issue for us is that, on the basis of the information that we've had indirectly from victims, clearly criminal offences have been committed. What we need to do now is to understand that in much more detail.'




    By the time of the Brixton riots in 1981 their organisation had gone underground where it remained for more than 30 years.
    One of the women rescued from a Brixton council flat last month was the daughter of a renowned Bletchley Park codebreaker during the Second World War.

    Josephine Herivel, 57, was allegedly held captive by the couple along with 69-year-old Aishah Wahab, a Malaysian student who came to Britain to study in 1968.
    Another woman, Sian Davies, who died in 1997, was a high-flying law student who studied at Cheltenham Ladies’ College before being ‘brainwashed’ by the militant communist collective in the 1970s.
    She is believed to be the mother of the third alleged slave, 30-year-old Rosie Davies, who is said to have spent most of her life locked up.
    Belfast-born Miss Herivel enjoyed a middle-class upbringing near Belfast’s so-called ‘millionaire row’. Her father John, a brilliant mathematician, was recruited from Cambridge University to break German military ciphers at Bletchley Park in January 1940.

    After being trained on how to break the German Enigma machine cipher by Alan Turing, the 21-year-old Sidney Sussex College student devised a method of codebreaking that became known as the Herivel Tip, or ‘herivelismus’.
    After the war he published a number of books on his work and moved to Belfast to become a lecturer at Queen’s University, Belfast. He and his wife Elizabeth, who also worked at Bletchley, later retired to Oxford, where he became a Fellow of All Souls College in 1978.
    In the same year Josephine, 22 – the youngest of his three daughters – was arrested for assault and obstructing police in London along with a number of young women who were part of the same revolutionary sect run by ‘Comrade Bala’, Aravindan Balakrishnan.
    An ITV film crew who spoke to Josephine at her home in Brixton following the inquest of Sian Davies in 1997 were accused of being agents of a ‘fascist state’.

    GP’s daughter Sian Davies was a former Cheltenham Ladies’ College pupil with a ‘bright and promising future’ before she joined the sect. She graduated in law at Aberystwyth University and was studying for a masters degree at the London School of Economics when she became mesmerised by ‘Comrade Bala’ and his group – the Workers’ Institute of Marxism-Leninism-Mao Tse Tung Thought.

    The talented cricketer, who once played at Lord’s, grew distant from her family as her involvement with ‘The Collective’ deepened.


    VIDEO: Alleged London slavery victims and 'sect leader'...





    ITV News claims two of the alleged victims rescued from the house in Brixton, are in the footage Aishah Wahab - (left) and Josephine (right)


    On Christmas Eve, 1996 she was fatally injured after falling out of a bathroom window at a property where she lived with the Balakrishnans.
    The 44-year-old was paralysed from the neck down and died seven months later.

    Yesterday her cousin Eleri Morgan said she bore a ‘striking resemblance’ to the youngest alleged slave, Rosie.

    The 64-year-old retired teacher, who has called for her cousin’s death to be investigated again, said: ‘She had everything going for her, such a promising and bright future.

    She met Comrade Bala and his wife whilst at university in London and I don’t know why, but she got sucked into his warped way of thinking and she became brainwashed.’

    This is Rosie Davies, the woman said to have been kept as a slave for three decades by a couple who ran a Maoist sect recruiting young women


    Miss Morgan said she last spoke to Miss Davies 18 months before her death, when she called to say she was caring for an elderly woman, believed to be Mrs Balakrishnan.

    Last night detectives were examining inquest reports into her death in October 1997.

    Rosie has told neighbours that her mother died and she was adopted by the suspects.
    The video footage filmed in the doorway of a south London property, as they shout at a man who has asked to speak to Comrade Bala.
    It reports that a Malaysian woman, seen wearing glasses and a plaid shirt, is believed to be Aishah, a 69-year-old woman Malaysian rescued from the house.

    It also claims that a second woman is Josephine, the Irish born 57-year-old also rescued from the house.

    She is seen in the footage shouting at the man: 'You're part of the fascist state.'


    Youngest victim: Rosie Davies' mother is believed to have fallen from a bathroom window and died

    It also emerged last night that a woman who may have been 30-year-old Rosie's mother died in mysterious circumstances at a property where the alleged captors previously lived with two other 'slaves'

    But the identity of her mother and circumstances of her death remain unclear.

    One neighbour who remembered the family living in Herne Hill said an older woman had died falling out of a window there.
    Sian Davies - who is thought to be Rosie's mother - is understood to have lived in the commune for more than 20 years

    She said: ‘One day the police came and told me an older woman living in that house had died falling out of a window at the back.

    'They asked if I had seen anything.

    'I said no and they never got back to me.’ Sian Davies, who was living with the family at the time of her death in 1997, is known to have joined the Maoist communist collective that Balakrishnan ran.
    In 1978, she was one of six young militant women arrested when police raided their headquarters in a bookshop in Brixton.
    A local newspaper report of the case reveals the group’s extremist views as the women chanted slogans calling for the ‘downfall of fascist Britain’ throughout their trial.
    The shocked judge in the case, Judge Hayan said he had never come across such bigotry during the proceedings.
    All six refused to enter pleas on 13 charges of obstructing or assaulting the police saying they ‘did not recognise the court, the judge of the jury system’
    The women also refused to let police search the Brixton property for drugs and chanted ‘Death to the fascist state.’
    One of the communists, Aishah Waham then 34, read a prepared statement saying that the British were the lackeys of the Americans.
    The report went on: ‘At the end of her speech the six chanted together with upraised right arms and clenched fists.
    ‘They said they were political prisoners facing trumped up charges.’

    Yesterday it emerged that Balakrishnan, and his wife, originally from India and Tanzania, were well known to the police and security services.

    Letters sent to Marius Feneck from Rosie - one of the three women held captive in Brixton
    DID CARLOS THE JACKAL VISIT SECT?

    Described as a ‘guru’, the economics graduate was said to be a powerful figure who had a tight-knit band of devoted female followers under his ‘spell’, most of whom were persuaded to give up their studies in order to ‘integrate with the working class’ and carry out ‘revolutionary work’

    Jesse Paddy, 64, said he had visited the ‘family’ a number of times and the youngest alleged slave even knitted a jumper for him.
    The couple arrested on suspicion of false imprisonment and immigration offences have been released on bail until a date in January.
    Lambeth Council has come under pressure to explain their contact with the couple as local councillors claim social services, education and housing departments all had contact with them.

    A Lambeth Council spokesman said: ‘Lambeth Council worked closely with the police in the weeks leading up to the three women leaving the house and continues to do everything to assist with the police investigation.
    ‘This is an extremely complex case involving a number of individuals going back decades.
    ‘It is too early at this stage to provide the detail of any contact we may have had with them.’
    Investigation: Police stand guard at the property in Brixton, south London, and are following many lines of inquiry including links to 13 addresses across London

    Shut down: The property at the centre of the slavery case was boarded up as police still guarded it, but officials have refused to say why

    Kind gift: Alleged prisoner Rosie knitted neighbour Jesse Paddy a jumper, who said he did not know anything about alleged slavery in the property



    Note: Rosie, 30, gave this warm handwritten message to with the garment earlier this year for Mr Paddy

    High-flying student turned back on family

    Woman believed to be Aishah, the 69-year-old Malaysian one of the victims


    The family of a Malaysian student alleged to have been enslaved for 30 years by the extreme Left-wing sect have told of their heartbreak.
    Retired teacher Kamar Mautum says one of the three captives freed last month is her sister Aishah Wahab, who disappeared after joining the Maoist faction.
    She boarded a flight from Kuala Lumpur to London last night to be reunited with her sister, now aged 69, saying: ‘I have felt so choked without her for years and years.

    ‘She was so talented; she was the apple of my mother’s eye. She asked for her on her deathbed.’

    Miss Wahab is believed to have suffered a stroke while she was allegedly held captive by sect leaders Aravindan Balakrishnan and his partner Chanda, who were arrested in Brixton, South London last week.
    Her sister added: ‘This has been a dark age for her and for all of us. I will do anything to bring her home. I want to see her before either of us dies. I am not sure if she will remember me but I am hopeful she will.

    ‘I hope her health is OK and she is receiving all the help she needs.’ Miss Wahab won a Commonwealth scholarship to study surveying in the UK and moved here in 1968 with her fiance Omar Munir.

    But she soon became involved in extremist politics and turned her back on her middle-class upbringing.
    Attracted to Balakrishnan’s group, Miss Wahab was so in awe of leader ‘Comrade Bala’ that she and Omar rowed over her ‘loyalty’ to him and eventually split, throwing her engagement ring in the Thames.

    The Malaysian government is said to have been wary about her returning home because of her politics. Miss Mautum said their brother, who lived in London, discouraged visits by his Maoist sister.

    ‘Aishah’s attitude was, “if you don’t want me, fine”. And then she disappeared,’ said Miss Mautum.
    The family later asked a prominent Malaysian radical, Ishammuddin Rais, to help find her, without success.
    Balakrishnan’s group eventually folded but Miss Wahab is believed to have remained one of his few followers.

    A former member claimed she ‘cut herself off from everybody’, adding: ‘She remained with them, was financially dependent on them, had no friends – she became more and more reliant on them.’
    Maoist Slavery suspect is a 'toothless old man' not a 'charismatic' leader, claims cousin of sect member who died

    Accusations: Eleri Morgan has told ITV News her cousin Sian Davies lived within the collective led by slavery suspect Aravindan Balakrishnan, who she described as a 'toothless old man'


    Slavery suspect Aravindan Balakrishnan was more of a 'toothless old man' than a 'charismatic' figure, according to the cousin of a woman who lived in his London commune for more than 20 years.

    Eleri Morgan claims her cousin Sian Davies died after in 1997 after mysteriously falling out of a bathroom window in the house the group were living in in Brixton.

    Ms Davies was kept in hospital for seven months after the fall, but her family claim they were not told.
    She had been jailed three times for her activism before she died, it was revealed today.

    Ms Morgan said Ms Davies wrote home talking of how she was looking after the 'mothers of the world' but was not allowed to see her cousin. Her letters always spoke of 'comrade Bala' - the name that Balakrishnan was referred to.

    Ms Morgan met Balakrishnan at the inquest into her cousin's death.

    She told ITV News: 'I had such a shock because I imagined somebody charismatic and there was this toothless old man - well looked old.'

    A senior council source confirmed that Balakrishnan and his wife Chanda were arrested last week by police amid allegations that they held three women for more than 30 years. It is claimed they were leaders of an extremist Maoist collective.

    The alleged victims - a 30-year-old Briton, a 57-year-old Irishwoman and a 69-year-old Malaysian - are believed to have suffered years of 'physical and mental abuse' at the hands of the pair.

    House-to-house inquiries have been carried out in Peckford Place in Brixton where the three women were found. Police have confirmed that there are ongoing inquiries relating to a total of 13 addresses, all in London, linked to the couple.




    Ms Morgan claims her cousin Sian Davies died after in 1997 after mysteriously falling out of a bathroom window in the house the group were living in in Brixton

    The couple, aged 73 and 67, are believed to have been well-known to the police in the 1970s after setting up a communist squat, the Mao Zedong Memorial Centre, in Acre Lane, Brixton in 1976.

    Ms Morgan recalled that her cousin had a boyfriend called Martin. She told ITV News: 'She was outgoing, we went clubbing in our younger days, enjoyed the good life, and next time I saw her she was in the morgue.

    'I picked up the paper and oh my God, Bala and it all came back to me... In the paper it implied they were all foreign students, but earlier they weren't all foreign. I know of Martin and Sian - what he did to our family he did to others.'

    A picture of Sian - who was 12 yrs old and at home in Tregaron, Wales, at the time the picture was taken




    Sian pictured left as a ten-year-old at home in Tregaron, Wales, and right at 21, at her graduation from Aberystwyth University



    Balakrishnan was a former member of the national executive committee of the Communist party of England (Marxist-Leninist) but documents show he was suspended from the party in 1974 for pursuing 'conspiratorial and splittist activities'.

    Documents also show how in 1978 police raided the Mao Zedong Memorial Centre, arresting 14 members of the organisation, including Aravindan Balakrishnan and wife Chanda, referred to as Comrade Chanda.

    A source at Lambeth Council said the couple were believed to have been in the property for around 10 years after moving there from a council property, and concerns had previously been raised with police about the education of the youngest woman.

    Scotland Yard would not comment on the claims, but previously said two of the victims met the male suspect through a 'shared political ideology', living with him at an address that was effectively called a 'collective'.

    Read more:


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    That Rosie girl looks like she might be Comrade Nutjob's daughter. How horrible if she is and he kept her prisoner her whole life.
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