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Monday 28 July 2014

Father and son jailed for forced labour, assault

Convicted: Tommy Connors Snr and his son PatrickEmma Sword

Published 08/05/2013|04:00

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A father and son who forced destitute men into servitude have been jailed.

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Tommy Connors Senior (53) was jailed for eight years and his son Patrick (21) for five years at Luton Crown Court, Bedfordshire Police said.

The pair, from the Greenacres site in Little Billington, Leighton Buzzard, had been convicted last July of servitude, compulsory labour and assault charges after a trial at the court.

They were sentenced yesterday after a separate trial at the same court failed to reach verdicts on other charges against both men and two more of Connors Senior's sons James Connors (25) and Tommy Junior Connors (27).

A jury at Luton Crown Court was discharged after failing to reach verdicts on any of the charges against the four men, Bedfordshire Police said.

It comes after the daughter of Connors Senior and her husband were jailed over slavery charges last year.

Josie Connors (31) and James John Connors (34) were sentenced to four years and 11 years respectively at Luton Crown Court following a 13-week trial last July.

The couple, also from the Greenacres site, were found guilty of holding a person in servitude and requiring a person to perform forced or compulsory labour. Connors was also convicted of a charge of assault.

Speaking after yesterday's sentencing, Detective Inspector Sharn Basra from the Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire Major Crime Unit, said: "The victims in this case were targeted by Tommy Senior and Patrick Connors, as well as James-John and Josie Connors, as they were vulnerable, had dependencies on drink or drugs, were homeless and basically had nowhere else to turn.

"The victims were afraid, living in squalid conditions, had no money or belongings, some suffered from malnutrition while others had old fracture wounds that hadn't healed properly and one man even had scurvy."

Irish Independent

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