47-year-old man charged with further human trafficking offences

June 19, 2024 9:58 am in by

A Darwin man will face Cairns Magistrates Court today (June 19), charged with an additional 15 human trafficking offences.

The AFP first charged the 47-year-old in December last year, following the rescue of two people from croc-infested waters in northern Queensland.

They had allegedly been threatened by their employer while on board his vessel, forcing them to jump overboard.

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The man was previously accused of recruiting crew members to work on his fishing boat through deceptive online ads and restraining them without consent.

He initially faced Darwin Magistrates Court on 22 offences against nine alleged victims.

Federal Police allege the man mistreated deckhands and coxswains who worked for him on his vessel, and held them against their will.

He was remanded in custody before successfully applying for bail.

Further investigations have identified five more victims, who say they were treated to the same treatment aboard the fishing boat.

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The alleged offender faces a maximum penalty of 20 years imprisonment.

AFP Acting Superintendent Tim Puchala says the AFP worked closely with its state, Commonwealth and international law enforcement partners to identify and disrupt human trafficking offences.

“The AFP, together with our law enforcement partners are committed to protecting the community from human trafficking, wherever it may occur,” Puchala says.

If you suspect that you or another person is experiencing modern slavery or human trafficking, call 131 AFP (237) or use the AFP’s confidential online form.