Traveller family slavery gang jailed

Image copyright lincolnshire law enforcement
Image caption The Rooney family ran the driveway resurfacing business

Nine associates of a traveller family who held workers in squalid conditions within caravans have been jailed for present day slavery offences.

A single victim, whose ordeal spanned a lot more than 25 years, was made to dig their own grave.

The head from the family, Martin Rooney Senior, had been jailed for 10 years, while 2 of his sons were every jailed for more than 15 many years.

The traveller loved ones were described as “chilling in their mercilessness”.

More on this and other stories through across Lincolnshire

The case at Nottingham Crown Courtroom was part of Lincolnshire Police’s Procedure Pottery investigation, one of the largest research of its kind.

The particular Rooneys’ victims were beaten plus left without running water or bathroom facilities at the Drinsey Nook web site in Lincolnshire.

Beaten, abused plus made to dig own grave

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Media caption The sister of one from the victims says he was required to dig his own grave

Sentencing Matn Rooney Senior, Timothy Spencer QC said: “You brought up your kids in a criminal culture. ”

The judge furthermore compared the squalid lives from the victims to the lavish lifestyle your family enjoyed.

“It was just like the gulf between medieval royals and peasantry, ” he informed him.

Image copyright laws Lincolnshire Police
Picture caption The head of the household Martin Rooney Senior was jailed for 10 years

Ch Supt Chris Davison, of Lincolnshire Police, said: “The victims will never get the years back again that were taken away from them but I really hope this provides them with some comfort that will justice has been served and shows that we will do everything in our capacity to try and stop others suffering within the ways that they did. ”

Mr Davison said there was potentially other victims of modern captivity in the UK and that the force “would not rest on this result”.

“We are exploring 5 active investigations and we will continue to place any victims at the very coronary heart of our investigations, ” he additional.

Police began functions against members of the Rooney family members in September 2014 when 7 warrants were executed in Lincolnshire, Nottinghamshire and London.

A number of victims were found as well as the UK Human Trafficking Centre came to the conclusion 18 men had been illegally delivered to the sites.

The sufferers were all described as vulnerable grown ups, aged between 18 and 63, who were often homeless and had already been picked up by the defendants from throughout the UK.

Image copyright laws Lincolnshire Police
Picture caption The victims resided in squalor, police said

In one assault, a man was beaten with a spade and left injured in a caravan for days for returning a car without petrol.

The courtroom also heard of one victim’s frightening ordeal which spanned more than a one fourth of a century.

On one occasion, he was designed to dig his own grave if this individual did not agree to a lifetime of servitude.

Image copyright Lincolnshire Police
Image caption The Rooneys’ victims had been beaten at the Drinsey Nook web site in Lincolnshire

Judge Spencer also talked of how the family used food as a way of control over their victims.

“They knew if they desired to eat, they had to stay at Drinsey Nook, ” he said.

“None of the men, inside my judgement, were ever truly liberated to leave at all. ”

“You stripped them of pride and humanity and confined these to a life of drudgery”.

Image copyright Lincolnshire Police
Image caption Bridget Rooney was informed she had the power to stop that which was happening but chose to ignore this

In the statement which was read in courtroom, one victim said “life using the Rooneys was a living hell”.

Judge Spencer told Bridget Rooney, described as the matriarch from the family, she had “the capacity to stop this”.

The lady was jailed for seven many years.


The 11 convicted are:

  • John Rooney, 31, associated with Drinsey Nook, Sheffield Road, Saxilby – Jailed for 15 many years and six months for conspiracy in order to require a person to perform forced or even compulsory labour, conspiracy to deceive, fraud by false representation, 2 counts of theft
  • Patrick Rooney, 31, of Drinsey Nook, Sheffield Road, Saxilby – Jailed intended for 15 years and nine several weeks for conspiracy to require a individual to perform forced or compulsory work, fraud by abuse of placement, assault occasioning actual bodily damage, two counts of theft
  • Bridget Rooney, 55, of Drinsey Corner, Sheffield Road, Saxilby – Jailed for seven years for conspiracy theory to require a person to perform compelled or compulsory labour
  • Martin Rooney, 57, of Drinsey Nook, Sheffield Road, Saxilby – Jailed regarding 10 years and nine months regarding conspiracy to require a person to do forced or compulsory labour, illegal wounding
  • Martin Rooney, 23, associated with Drinsey Nook, Sheffield Road, Saxilby – Jailed for six many years and nine months for conspiracy theory to require a person to perform compelled or compulsory labour, assault occasioning actual bodily harm
  • John Rooney, 53, of Chantry Croft, Pontefract – Jailed for five yrs and 10 months for two matters of conspiracy to require a individual to perform forced or compulsory work
  • Peter Doran, 36, of Washingborough Road, Lincoln – Jailed designed for six years for conspiracy in order to require a person to perform forced or even compulsory labour
  • Gerard Rooney, fouthy-six, of Washingborough Road, Lincoln — Jailed for six years meant for conspiracy to require a person to do forced or compulsory labour
  • Lawrence Rooney, 47, of no set address – Currently serving the five year prison sentence and when complete, will serve another 6 years for conspiracy to need a person to perform forced or mandatory labour
  • Martin Rooney, 35, associated with Sainfoin Farm, Gatemoor Lane, Beaconsfield received a two year hanging sentence for two years
  • Patrick Rooney, 54, of Sainfoin Farm, Gatemoor Lane, Beaconsfield received a twelve month suspended sentence for two yrs

Two others, Eileen Rooney, thirty-two, of Drinsey Nook, Sheffield Street, Saxilby and Nora Rooney, thirty-one, of the same address, were each acquitted.


Image caption Janine Smith, from the Crown Criminal prosecution Service, paid tribute to the sufferers

Talking outside court after sentencing, Janine Smith, from the Crown Prosecution Program, said the sentences “reflect the amount of exploitation, control and violence these people exhibited and the betrayal of those these people condemned to forced labour as well as the people they defrauded”.

She added: “I hope that will seeing their abusers imprisoned is going to be of some comfort to them and will also be a suitable acknowledgement of their courage within giving evidence. ”

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