Carlisle pair deny slavery charges after man found living in shed

image copyrightGLAA
image captionThe shed had soiled bedding and no form of heating

A father and son have denied exploiting a man who is believed to have lived in a shed for up to 40 years.

The alleged victim was found with just a chair, a metered TV and soiled bedding during a raid at a residential site north of Carlisle in October 2018.

Peter Swailes, 80, and his 55-year-old son, also called Peter Swailes, appeared at the city's crown court via video link and pleaded not guilty to charges of modern slavery.

They will face trial next January.

Prosecutors claim the men "conspired together and with others" to arrange or facilitate the travel of a worker with a view to exploitation.

Investigators previously stated the alleged victim, who is British and in his 50s, may have lived in the shed for decades.

Mr Swailes Senior, of Hadrian Park, Brampton Old Road, Carlisle, and his son, of Low Harker, also Carlisle, were granted unconditional bail ahead of the trial.

It is estimated the hearing will take three weeks with evidence from the alleged victim set to be pre-recorded.

He was found in the shed by Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority investigators and has since received specialist support.

The court heard he is now living "outside of Carlisle".

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