|Convicted Baby Trafficker to get Custodial Sentence|
Council officer alerted Police to woman cheating system
A woman who was thrown out of her accommodation in Acton was convicted at Isleworth Crown Court on Friday for child trafficking.
Peace Sandberg, 40, was told she would be jailed. She was remanded in custody and will be sentenced on May 16th. After convicting her of bringing a non-EU citizen into the UK, Judge Sam Kathkuda told her: "These offences always attract a custodial sentence."
A police source said later: "The extend of child trafficking for benefit fraud and domestic servitude is becoming clearer. We believe there are thousands of cases. The more we look into it, the more we find."
Sandberg, a divorcee, was thrown out of her rented accommodation in Acton, then flew home to Nigeria where she paid £150 for a three-month-old boy. She told immigration at Heathrow the baby was hers, then turned up at an Ealing Council homeless unit. Staff there called the police because she had not been pregnant when they had seen her in November. She eventually admitted she was not the mother of the child.
Police found a forged birth certificate and the baby has been taken into care.
In response to the case, Cllr Ian Green, Cabinet Member for Adult Services and Housing said:
"We welcome this guilty verdict. It's disgusting that this woman was trying to bring a baby into the country illegally to try to cheat a priority place on the housing register. It's horrifying to think that someone would try to use an innocent child in that way. It was only because one of our eagle-eyed housing officers had concerns about the woman that the police were alerted and were able to investigate. I hope this acts as a strong deterrent to other people who might be tempted to try to cheat the system."
April 18, 2008