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Voodoo 'Sex trafficker'
Paul Conneally | December 11, 2007 at 09:44 amby
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A SOUTH Yorkshire man accused of helping mastermind an international sex trafficking operation has failed in his fight to prevent extradition to Holland.
Gilbert Ektor, 31, of Canklow Road, Rotherham, is said to have been part of a gang which used voodoo to lure African children into the sex trade in Europe.
He was arrested in a dawn raid in Coventry on October 24 on a European Arrest Warrant after an 18-month investigation by Dutch authorities.
Justices sitting at City of Westminster Magistrates' Court granted an application for his extradition to Holland last month - but Nigerian-born Ektor launched a High Court bid to overturn the decision.
However, Lord Justice Richards and Mr Justice Cranston threw out his appeal and ruled he must be sent to Holland to face the allegations.
Ektor is accused of the Dutch offences of human trafficking, people smuggling, falsifying or forging travel documents, abduction of minors from lawful authority and involvement in a criminal organisation.
His arrest was part of an international police investigation that led to numerous arrests in Britain, the United States, Belgium, Spain, Holland, Ireland and Nigeria.
The Dutch authorities allege he played an "important" and "directing" role in the operation, which saw young children lured from their homes in Nigeria to Holland.
Once there, they were allegedly registered as asylum seekers and taken into refuge homes run by the Dutch government.
Members of the gang would then allegedly use the fear of voodoo and threats of violence against the children or their families to take them out of the refuges and force many of them into prostitution, mostly in Spain and Italy.
The alleged operation is said by Dutch authorities to be part of a "wide-reaching criminal network, operating at a national and international level" which is still under investigation