A Nigerian woman, 24-year-old Lizzy Idahosa, has been found guilty of trafficking two women from Nigeria to the UK to work as prostitute.
According to the BBC, she arranged for the women to be put through a ritualistic “juju” ceremony in Nigeria to make them afraid of disobeying her.
Her partner Jackson Omoruyi was also found guilty of money laundering offences.
Sentencing was adjourned but Judge Tom Crowther warned the defendants they should expect custodial sentences of some length.
Idahosa was found guilty of trafficking women to and around the UK, along with inciting prostitution and money laundering.
She is heavily pregnant with Omoruyi’s baby, and already has a young child with him.
During the trial, the jury heard the women worked in brothels to repay Idahosa £50,000 for travel from Nigeria and false documents.
The victims, who cannot be named for legal reasons, said the juju ritual – sometimes known as voodoo or magic – left them fearing illness, madness, infertility and death.
They slept with with up to seven or eight men a day and were moved around a number of brothels in Croydon, Stevenage, Brighton, Swansea and Cardiff.
Home Office officials and police eventually found one of the women working at a brothel in Cardiff in June 2013, and they quickly discovered she was a victim of trafficking. The other woman was later persuaded to talk about her experiences.