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Leaders of crime gang running several brothels in London jailed for eight years

One victim said she was told her family in Brazil would be killed if she tried to leave.

Renato Sacchi
Renato Sacchi
Image: Met Police

AN ORGANISED CRIME gang which made millions from operating illegal brothels in London has been sentenced to eight years in prison term. 

The trial resulted from a special investigation carried out by the Metropolitan Police’s central specialist crime command. 

The gang operated a number of brothels across London and had armed security overseeing the operation. 

One man, 43 year-old Renato Dimitrov Sacchi, originally denied the allegations but later pleaded guilty to conspiracy to control prostitution for gain, being concerned in the supply of Class A drugs, possession of a prohibited weapon, and possession of criminal property. 

He was sentenced to eight years and 11 months imprisonment. 

A 23-year-old woman, Flavia Xavier-Sacchi also pleaded guilty later in the trial having first denied the offences – she was charged with the above same offences as Renato and sentenced to eight years and seven months in prison. 

Raul Sacchi (49) was convicted of conspiracy to control prostitution for gain and being concerned in the supply of Class A drugs, and received nine years and six months imprisonment. 

Detectives working the investigation identified these three individuals as a senior level of management within the organised crime gang. 

The Met police said “they enjoyed lavish lifestyles and spent the proceeds made from the exploitation of sex workers, on luxury holidays, vehicles and jewellery. 

CO768-19 Money 2 Cash and luxury cars were seized during raids. Source: Robson Sarah - Professional Standards

A number of other people also plead guilty to criminal offences or were convicted at trial. 

Police said: “To protect their criminal enterprise, the OCG armed their security with a variety of weapons including tasers, pepper spray, cattle prods, and baseball bats. The guards also oversaw the sale of alcohol and drugs from each of the venues.”

Throughout the course of the investigation one female came forward as a victim and told police she was forced to work in the brothels over the course of two months.

Her movements were monitored by CCTV and the OCG threatened to have her family in Brazil killed if she tried to leave. In April 2017 the victim escaped and sought help from police.

Raids were carried out at a number of different locations in May 2018 and February 2019.

During the search of the home address of Renato and Flavia Sacchi on 6 February 2019, fifteen packs of cash were found. Also found was a quantity of cash totalling around €57,000, two tasers and a CS gas canister.

Throughout the investigation detectives examined mobile phones seized from the group.

They found charts showing the structure of the gang with distinct roles of “leadership”, “security” and “operator”. Raul Sacchi described this in correspondence as the “hierarchic flowchart”.

Detective Inspector Dan Mitchell from Central Specialist Crime said: “This lengthy and complex investigation has dismantled an organised crime group who were exploiting women across London for their own financial gain.”

“Through thorough examination of their devices, detectives found the group saw themselves as a legitimate business which they went to extreme lengths to protect. They employed and armed security guards, and maintained control over all communication between their so-called employees.

“Individuals often are reticent or too afraid to come forward in modern slavery investigations, so it is our job to build a prosecution and dismantle OCGs like this with whatever evidence we can.”

“Anyone considering exploiting other human beings for financial gain should expect to face the same level of expert investigation and prosecution,” he added. 

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