Criminal exploitation: practitioner guidance

Guidance to support a shared understanding of criminal exploitation to help assist with early identification of those at risk from serious organised crime. This guidance also applies to criminal exploitation which is not linked to serious organised crime.

Appendix 2 - Glossary of Terms

Bando – Abandoned building such as a house, pub or shop where drugs are sold or manufactured.

Burner Phone - A “burner phone” is a cheap, prepaid mobile phone that can be destroyed or discarded when no longer required, therefore they are often used to evade detection by authorities.

Burner SIM - A “burner SIM” is a related term, and refers to a cheap, prepaid SIM card that can be inserted into another phone. The SIM card may be used for a limited period and not linked to a person’s true identity.

Competent Authorities – The SCA and Immigration Enforcement Competent Authority (IECA) sit within the Home Office and consider cases of potential victims referred to the NRM. The Competent Authorities operate a two-stage decision-making process to determine whether an individual is a victim of modern slavery.

County Lines - The 2018 Home Office Serious Crime Strategy states the NPCC definition of a County Line is a term used to describe gangs and organised criminal networks involved in exporting illegal drugs into one or more importing areas (within the UK), using dedicated mobile phone lines or other form of “deal line”.

Cuckooing – This is the act of taking over a person's home; often by exploitation, force, coercion, intimidation, bribery, initial payment or promise of payment or violence. Victims are often targeted due to disability, ill health or substance use. The home then becomes a safe house, providing accommodation, a place to deal drugs from and a place to store weapons and drugs etc. This gives the Serious and Organised Crime group a local base from which to operate, and bases are disposable/quickly changeable.

Forced Labour – This is defined by the European Convention on Human Rights. In summary it is where an individual is exploited for a perpetrator’s gain via forced or compulsory labour, regardless of the human cost to the victim. Common sectors where individuals are exploited for labour include agriculture, seafood/ fishing industry, car washes, restaurants/ takeaways, hospitality, construction, factories, delivery drivers.

Human Trafficking - Human trafficking and exploitation is the commodification and abuse of people for gain. It is a gross abuse of human rights, happens globally and harms individuals and communities across the world, including in Scotland. Not all cases of human trafficking or exploitation are easy to understand or detect and often the crime may look like something else, such as people smuggling or working illegally. The Human Trafficking and Exploitation (Scotland) Act 2015 sets out two criminal offences: human trafficking, and slavery, servitude and forced or compulsory labour.

National Referral Mechanism (NRM) - The NRM is the UK-wide framework through which potential victims of trafficking in the UK are identified, so that they can be supported and protected. It is a particular process to be followed when it is suspected that an adult or a child might be a victim of trafficking. Only designated First Responders can make a referral into the NRM.

Snapchat Snap map – This is a location-sharing feature on the social media platform called Snapchat. It allows a person to easily meet up with friends in real life, by sharing their current location, which then appears to friends on a map and updates when Snapchat is open.

Trap house - A building used as a base from where drugs are sold and sometimes manufactured. This may be cuckooed addresses or abandoned buildings “bandos”.

Trapping - The act of selling drugs. Trapping can refer to the act of moving drugs from one town to another or the act of selling drugs in one town.



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