Man denies trafficking girl

0
Have your say

A MAN from Peterborough accused of trafficking a 16-year-old virgin to work as a prostitute told a court she begged him to take her to England and asked her mother for permission.

A MAN from Peterborough accused of trafficking a 16-year-old virgin to work as a prostitute told a court she begged him to take her to England and asked her mother for permission.Edward Facuna (54) told the girl that he would be able to get her a good job at a pub in Peterborough, jurors heard.

Facuna and his co-defendant, Roman Pacan (39), drove the girl from her village in Slovakia through Germany, Holland and France before finally arriving in Dover, it is claimed.

But he insisted he had never met the teenager until the day she pleaded with him to take her to England.

Facuna said he would often travel back and forth between his flat in St Mary's Court, Peterborough, to his native home, and met Pacan on one of these journeys.

Giving his evidence through an interpreter, Facuna said: "We would share the cost of petrol on these journeys.

"People used to come to the restaurant where I worked and usually asked who was going to Slovakia, so they could probably fill the car and travel together.'"

Facuna explained he met Pacan, who is jointly charged with trafficking a person into the UK for purposes of sexual exploitation, in 2006.

"The first time I met him he was with his partner, when I first travelled with him I knew him about a week," he said.

Southwark Crown Court heard the pair arranged a second trip from Slovakia to the UK a few weeks later, and were then introduced to the 16-year-old alleged victim.

In the dock with Facuna and Pacan are Turks Ali Arslan (43) and his brother-in-law Mesut Arslan (26), Kosovan Martin Doci (29), and Albanian Valmir Gjetja (29), who "shared a common greed at the expense of vulnerable women", it is said.

But Facuna denied knowing any of the other defendants before the trial began.

The victim told the court that Pacan and Facuna took her to a coffee shop in Peterborough and left her with an Albanian pimp called Claude.

Paul Wakerly, defending Facuna, asked his client: "Do you, within the Peterborough community, know an Albanian man called Claude?"

The defendant replied: "No."

Gjetja, of Greenford, west London, denies controlling prostitution for gain, one count of unlawful wounding, assault causing actual bodily harm and possession of a firearm with intent to cause fear of violence.

He was earlier cleared of two counts of unlawful wounding by the judge.

Ali Arslan, of Stamford Hill, north London, has admitted two counts of keeping a brothel used for prostitution.

He still faces a separate charge of controlling prostitution for gain.

Mesut Arslan, of Homerton, east London, denies two counts of keeping a brothel used for prostitution.

Ali and Mesut Arslan also deny trafficking within the UK for purposes of sexual exploitation and controlling a child prostitute.

Martin Doci, of Vale Road, Forest Gate, denies controlling a child prostitute and trafficking within the UK for purposes of sexual exploitation.

Facuna, of St Mary's Court, Peterborough; and Pacan of Parliament Street, also of Peterborough; deny trafficking a person into the UK for purposes of sexual exploitation.

The trial continues.