"Exploitation is the key element of this offence".
At a press conference in Barrie on Monday, representatives from the Barrie police, the Ontario Provincial Police, Barrie and Area Victim Services, and the County of Simcoe Paramedic services released more details of the investigation. They were made to pay their alleged traffickers large sums of money for transportation and housing, and were only allowed to keep less than $50 a month in some cases.
Here is another example of the squalid conditions the workers faced.
One victim reportedly told an officer: "Last night I went to bed a slave". Rick Barnum, provincial commander of OPP Investigations and Organized Crime. They were then transported by the alleged traffickers to and from work locations.More news: Richard Gere, 69, and wife Alejandra Silva welcome baby boy
There is no word on criminal charges at this time. They found that the alleged victims were lured to Canada believing they would be offered jobs and educational opportunities.
For now, Mr. Barnum said, the workers' needs are being put first. All victims have been offered accommodation and legal employment at a local resort, said Greenwood.
Police began investigating a year ago and executed 12 search warrants last week. About 250 police officers were involved.
Police say they are keeping close track of two people who were running the company that employed the foreign workers as the investigation continues.More news: Heavy snow in Metro Vancouver, Vancouver Island causes travel woes
Human trafficking is "modern-day slavery", said Barnum. She called it "very disturbing". Labour human trafficking is a hard crime to investigate.
Victims are often members of vulnerable populations, including migrant workers and new immigrants.
"It is inconceivable that this was taking place in our community", she added. "These individuals are now free from the control of the people who wished to exploit them for their personal gain". "It has no place in our communities and will not be tolerated".
The OPP declined to name the hotels and vacation properties where the men worked and the cleaning company in Barrie.More news: Meghan Markle's Father Shares Letter Allegedly From the Duchess
"We don't want to identify the resorts specifically, but what we can say is that all of them have been very co-operative with the police since being made aware of the situation", said OPP Det.