Two businessmen charged over 10 Romanians ‘kept as car wash slaves’


Two businessmen appeared in court today charged with keeping 10 men as slaves at a car wash.

Kreshnik Dida, 27, and Avdi Dida, 26, are accused of holding the Romanians in servitude for up to five months.

The accusations follow a police raid at their car wash.

They were targeted in an operation involving around 150 officers from agencies including the National Crime Agency and the Home Office.

The Dida Hand Car Wash and Valet Centre, in Southampton, Hants, was one of nine car washes in the county stormed during the crackdown.

Its Facebook page advertises 50 per cent off deals and free hand polishes, alongside a series of photos of top cars including Ferraris and Mercedes.

Interviews with nine men at the car wash raised the alarm that they may have been victims of trafficking and exploitation, and a 10th was identified later.

They are now receiving emotional and practical support from experts at a specialist centre.

Chief Superintendent Dave Hardcastle, from Hampshire Police, warned drivers to think about the ‘true cost’ of their cheap car wash.

CS Hardcastle said: “This action was about bringing together different agencies to respond to a national picture of car wash businesses.

“It shows some have links to organised crimes such as human trafficking and servitude.

“They may also come to the attention of other agencies looking at issues of minimum wages, tax, immigration and pollution.

“Many car washes are legitimately run, but those that aren’t can have a significant impact on our communities.

“If you get your vehicle washed at one of these sites and it seems too good to be true, ask yourself: what’s the real cost and is anyone being exploited?

“If you think the service a car wash provides is too good to be true for the amount it costs, you might want to ask yourself whether it is above board.”

Kreshnik, from Chandlers Ford, and Avdi, from Southampton, Hants, are charged with knowingly holding another person in slavery or servitude.

The 10 counts relate to 10 men at a car wash business in Southampton, Hants, between January and May.

The accused men were bailed at Southampton Magistrates Court and are due to appear at the crown court next month.


Two businessmen charged over 10 Romanians ‘kept as car


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