NEWS

Sex gang victim risks all in jump

A young woman from Lithuania suffered severe spinal injuries after jumping from the balcony of a hotel in northern Greece in order to escape a gang that had forced her into prostitution, police said yesterday. Three suspected gang members, Greek men aged 59, 48 and 45, were arrested and charged with procuring and sex trafficking. One of the suspects had a past conviction for procuring. The 18-year-old, whose name was not made public, was being treated under police guard in a Thessaloniki hospital. Doctors expressed hopes that, following surgery today, she would be able to regain full use of her lower limbs. A second 18-year-old from Lithuania, who jumped with the first from the first floor of a central Veria hotel where the two were forced to work as prostitutes, escaped with minor cuts. Police said the injured girl had refused to testify against the suspects, claiming to have fallen off the balcony in a fit of dizziness. The second woman has been placed in a witness protection program.