Sgt. Llewellyn brings trafficking fight to Bryan
February 08, 2010
Don't let Detective Sergeant Roddy Llewellyn's dapper blue pinstripe suit fool you. This charming Englishman has traveled all over Europe leading a special operation for the New Scotland Yard to end human trafficking.
Based in London, Llewellyn joined the New Scotland Yard, headquarters for the Metropolitan Police Force, 29 years ago. He founded in March 2007 Operation Maxim, a team whose sole mission is to stop the trafficking of persons for the purposes of sexual exploitation, forced labor, domestic servitude, and organ harvesting. "I could tell you stories that would make your hair curl," he said.
Last week Detective Llewellyn lectured about human trafficking at Bryan College and the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, as well as at social agencies and to law enforcement personnel in Chattanooga in a program organized and sponsored by the Bryan Center for International Development and UTC's Cooperative Education Office.
"The primary object of an efficient police is the prevention of crime," said Detective Llewellyn, quoting Richard Mayne, the first commissioner of the Metropolitan Police Service in 1829. Although measuring success of crime prevention is difficult, it is one of Detective Llewellyn's goals as he proactively keeps the process of human trafficking from ever starting. One of the tools he uses is awareness, the point of lectures to several classes at Bryan.
He explained how victims typically are trafficked and had students role play the process based on stories he has witnessed. He shared about undercover operations to rescue trafficked women and how prosecution happens after traffickers are captured. His human trafficking team, which includes experienced detectives and undercover agents, has dismantled 28 networks since 2007 with some criminals receiving sentences of more than 100 years in prison.
Detective Llewellyn shared some practical things that anyone can do to help end human trafficking. "It all starts in your local community," he explained, citing as an example the Croydon Community Against Trafficking (CCAT), a "coalition of concerned citizens, faith and community groups who aim to stop the injustice of human trafficking for sexual exploitation within the borough of Croydon [Surrey UK]."
According to their website, "CCAT wants to free slaves of human trafficking in our town, stop 'slavers' and their businesses from profiting from the sale of people, and ensure that as many of our community members and leaders in Croydon know about the problem and help us stop this injustice by taking action!" They do this by targeting local businesses that they suspect might be using trafficked victims as workers, contact the owners, and if their suspicions prove correct they begin asking local newspapers to stop advertising these illegitimate businesses and alert the authorities.
As for Detective Llewellyn, he will continue to travel the world and use his team to bring justice to those who have been trafficked. "People need to know there is a knight out there to protect them," he said. "My job is to empower these victims. I want them to know that this man is on their side, and I will fight for them."