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A guide to modern slavery offences from our criminal solicitor
16 Dec 2022

When most people think of modern slavery, they usually picture incidents of human trafficking or other barbaric practices involving the movement of young girls and boys to work in illegal and immoral practices.

However, there are other kinds of modern slavery too, which relate to forced labour, domestic slavery, bonded labour, forced marriage and child labour. So, if you find yourself accused of modern slavery offences or a link to modern slavery offences, it does not only mean human trafficking.

At ABV Solicitors, our criminal solicitor is experienced in defending those who have found themselves caught up in modern slavery accusations or have even been charged with these offences, and we will work tirelessly to have any charges and sentences against you minimised or dropped if applicable.

So, if you are accused of modern slavery, what should you do? And what is the sentencing if you are found guilty? Read on for this short guide from our criminal solicitor.

Steps to take

When you are arrested for modern slavery offences, or you have a suspicion that you will be soon, you will need to contact our criminal solicitor. Aim to do this as soon as possible, so we can begin building your defence.

When you are being interviewed by police or the National Crime Agency, please remember that you do not have to answer any of their questions and should only aim to do so once you have sought professional legal advice from our team. Or, better yet, there should be a member of our team present. You also have the legal right to free representation, and you can either choose your own solicitor or use the duty solicitor.

Potential outcomes

Modern slavery offences are very serious, and after the aforementioned interview has occurred, you may be released with no further action being taken, or you may be released under investigation. You could be detained or charged with a specific offence, but our team will always aim for the former outcomes if possible.

If you are charged with modern slavery offences, you will either be released on bail or kept in custody until the hearing.

Please note that even if you have been released in relation to modern slavery charges, you could be rearrested at any time or be called to attend a court hearing, which will require our team to defend you.


If the allegations are false, we will look to build your case from the prosecution’s evidence, along with any evidence that you may have to hand. If you were somewhat involved in any of the allegations, we would base our defence around the level of your involvement, aiming to minimise it as much as we can.


Modern slavery charges, particularly human trafficking, carry a sentence of around 14 years in prison. But this may be lengthened depending on other factors, such as how many people were exploited, their age, the nature of the exploitation, how long it occurred, if violence was used and whether or not they were psychologically abused.

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Types of modern slavery explained by our criminal solicitor