UK jails Nigeria witchcraft sex trafficker

2012-10-29 22:30

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London - A Nigerian sex trafficker who used witchcraft rituals to silence the teenage girls he smuggled into Britain for prostitution was jailed for 20 years on Monday.

Osezua Osolase, 42, tricked three impoverished Nigerian orphans into travelling to Britain before attempting to sell them to gangs in Europe for prostitution.

The recycling plant worker, who lived in Kent, southeast England, used west African juju rituals to instil terror in the three girls, aged 14, 16 and 17.

"You are undoubtedly a very, very dishonest man," said judge Adele Williams as she sentenced him at Canterbury Crown Court in Kent.

"You are arrogant and manipulative; you are devoid of conscience, devoid of any compassion to your victims."

Osolase, who has HIV, was found guilty after a six-week trial on Friday of five counts of trafficking for sexual exploitation, one count of rape and one of sexual activity with a child.

The fact that he had raped one girl knowing that he has HIV was a "seriously aggravating" factor, Williams said.

It was recommended that Osolase be deported once he has served his sentence.

Oath of silence

He had convinced the girls to travel to Britain with fake Nigerian passports by promising them an education and modelling careers, the court heard.

He was stopped at Stansted Airport, north of London, in April last year while attempting to board a plane.

His 16-year-old victim told police that he had performed a juju ritual on her in Nigeria in which blood was taken from her and hair was cut from her head and genitals.

She was then made to swear an oath of silence.

Police believe there were at least 25 victims of Osolase's trafficking ring, which smuggled girls into Britain before passing them on to gangs in countries including Italy and Spain.

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