A former University of Southampton lecturer and her husband have been arrested on suspicion of keeping a builder as a slave in their garden shed for four years. Pritpal Binning, 56 – who left her post as a Health Sciences lecturer at Southampton last year – along with her husband Palvinder Binning, 54, have been accused of forcing the man to work on their property.
The victim, who is in his 40s, told investigators that he had been kept inside the Binning’s garden shed for the last four years. He told them he received no pay, and was fed ‘out of date food’.
The man visited an NHS walk-in centre in Southampton, which led staff to tip-off the Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority (GLAA). An investigation was subsequently launched.
The shed, where the builder supposedly lived, consisted of purely a fridge and a barbecue, along with a plastic sun lounger, where the builder had to sleep. The victim, who was from Poland, had no access to a flushing toilet. The conditions were labelled as ‘degrading and disgusting’. See the image below.
The Binning’s property – a £1.2Million mansion in a leafy area – was stormed on Tuesday 30th October, with the couple arrested on suspicion of modern slavery offences. Evidence was collected from the property, and investigations are set to continue.
Both Binning’s have been released under investigation pending further enquiries. Binning left her position as a lecturer at the University of Southampton last year – after having served almost 30 years.
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If these allegations are proven true, it is a very disappointing action. Slavery has no place in the modern world, and is sad to see. Anyone who suspects an individual is being exploited is urged to contact the GLAA’s intelligence team. Details of how to do so:
- T: 0800 432 0804
- E: firstname.lastname@example.org