Exploited stable worker freed by Guardia Civil

The Guardia Civil has released a worker in Baix Penedès (Tarragona) who was being exploited in an equestrian centre. The two people who own this centre have been arrested for the crime of trafficking for labour exploitation.

The detainees took advantage of the vulnerable situation of the victim – a Peruvian national – and their irregular situation in Spain to keep him in the workplace at all times, where he lived in poor hygienic conditions. The worker was recruited through an advertisement on a job portal, offered under the guise of a legal job.

The victim was entrusted with the duties of stable boy, and he carried them out during exhausting workdays, without health protection or measures to prevent occupational risks.

This person had to live in a narrow warehouse in the horse stables, where manure and other waste was stored. For personal hygiene and cooking, water that was in a nearby trough was used, lacking any hygienic sanitary measures. The victim was also not provided with the necessary equipment for the jobs to perform, which was another reason to increase the hardship in job performance.

These deficiencies have caused the victim various pathologies, affecting their eyes and skin, marked loss of body weight, as well as an emotional state.

The victim was subjected to such exploitation that they even had to carry out the work, even if they were unwell or had symptoms of illness. Another indication of the vulnerable situation was that the money they received was managed directly by the employers.

After the investigation, the Guardia Civil together with the competent social services have managed to protect the victim by obtaining aid. Among them, a decent housing solution, as well as obtaining temporary residence and work permits, with agents physically accompanying them throughout the process.

The operation has been carried out in coordination with the Prosecutor’s Office for Human Trafficking and Immigration in Tarragona, the Territorial Labor Inspection of Tarragona, and the Cruz Blanca Foundation. The police proceedings have been handed over to the Investigative Court No. 6 of El Vendrell (Tarragona).