NEWS

Schoolgirl saved from brothel

In a joint operation with Albanian officers, Greek police have rescued a teenage girl abducted over a year ago from her home in Attica by sex-traffickers and forced to prostitute herself in an Albanian brothel, a report said yesterday. The 14-year-old girl, whose nationality was not revealed, had been due to be smuggled out of western Albania into Italy – where she had been sold to another gang – but was saved by the police operation, according to Mega TV. She has since been reunited with her mother in Greece and is undergoing counseling. The report said the girl was abducted last year from the coastal settlement of Nea Peramos, some 35 kilometers (22 miles) west of Athens, in August 2002. After months of investigation, Greek detectives – assisted by Albanian officers – traced her to the Albanian town of Durres, where she had been obliged to work in a brothel. Mega said the Albanian gang that operated the brothel had recently agreed to sell the girl to another gang in Italy for 23,500 euros. Last May, Greek police saved a 15-year-old girl who had been kidnapped in September 2001, beaten and forced to work as a prostitute in Athens. The teenager, an ethnic Greek from Albania who lived in the prefecture of Ileia in the western Peloponnese with her parents, had been abducted by an Albanian woman who asked her out for a coffee and then knocked her out with an anaesthetic spray. The woman took her to an apartment in Athens where she sold her to an Iraqi, who, along with three other Iraqis, repeatedly raped and tortured the girl, gave her heroin to keep her docile and forced her to prostitute herself.