Johannesburg - The Hawks and the Thai embassy are tight-lipped about the arrest of three men who allegedly held three women captive at a house in Garsfontein, Pretoria, and allegedly used them as sex slaves.
The three men have since appeared in court and the women have been freed. Hawks spokesperson Colonel Katlego Mogale said they made the breakthrough when one of the captive victims managed to escape.
The woman, believed to be of Thai descent, reported her ordeal to the Thai Embassy and claimed she and the other two women had been held against their will for sexual exploitation.
“This prompted the involvement of law enforcement and social services. The information was followed up and contact was made with one of the victims who was still held against her will at the premises. Two more victims were rescued after members of the Hawks’ Serious Organised Crime Investigation assisted by TMPD K9 and SAPS PTA K9 gained access into the premises,” she said.
But details of the dramatic rescue remain unknown and the Hawks could not elaborate on how the woman escaped, whether she had a phone, who the other women were and how they came to be at the house and how they were captured. It’s also not known what the nationalities of the other two women are.
“Two women and men all of Asian descent. This is an ongoing investigation and we cannot reveal much at this time,” Mogale said.
Meanwhile, the Thai embassy in Pretoria also refused to shed light on the matter. In an email to Independent Media, the embassy said: “We do not want to provide further info at this stage before the Hawks get back to you. We just provided normal consular assistance to the three Thai ladies as requested by them. My ambassador has considered your request for information and he decided that it will be best not to comment at this time because the case is still ongoing and he does not want to put distress on the Thai community by prematurely commenting.”
The three men appeared in court on Monday and the case was postponed to July 31 for a formal bail application. The three men were remanded in custody.