Detectives have made a number of arrests after executing a series of warrants as part of an investigation into reported sexual exploitation of female victims in Bournemouth.

The warrants were conducted at a number of addresses in the town on the night of Tuesday 2 July into the morning of Wednesday 3 July 2024, following detailed enquiries led by detectives from Dorset Police’s Safeguarding Hub into reports of sexual exploitation and human trafficking offences.

The investigation was assisted by the South West Regional Organised Crime Unit.

Two men aged in their 30s, a woman aged in her 30s and a woman aged in her 20s – all from Bournemouth – were arrested on suspicion of modern slavery offences and a money laundering offence. A fifth man, aged in his 30s and from Bournemouth, was arrested on suspicion of possessing a class A drug and possessing a class B drug with intent to supply.

All five have been released under investigation.

Cordons were put in place at the addresses as enquiries were carried out and potential evidence was secured. The investigation into this matter remains ongoing.

Detective Inspector Amy Wilson, of the Safeguarding Hub, said: “We take reported offences relating to sexual exploitation and human trafficking extremely seriously and we will continue to take positive action to identify those believed to be involved and safeguard those who are being exploited.

“We would also urge anyone who is the victim of modern slavery offences or any kind of exploitation to please come forward to report it to us, in the knowledge that you will be fully supported and we will thoroughly investigate the matter.

“Furthermore, we would urge members of the public to be vigilant of the signs that someone could be being exploited and to report any concerns to police.”

We would urge anyone who has information to report it to us online at www.dorset.police.uk,  or by calling 101. If a crime is in progress, always call 999.For more information on human trafficking and modern slavery, including how to spot signs and report concerns, visit https://www.dorset.police.uk/advice/advice-and-information/ms/modern-slavery/