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Last Updated: Thursday, 10 November 2005, 17:49 GMT
Man denies trafficking prostitute
Gjerji Mungiovi-Cuka
Gjerji Mungiovi-Cuka denies a charge of sex trafficking
A Lithuanian woman was forced to work as a prostitute in Cardiff after being sold for 5,000 a court has heard.

Cardiff Crown Court was told that the woman, aged 20, worked in brothels and gave her earnings to an Albanian gang.

Akil Likcani admitted trafficking her for sexual exploitation and controlling her activities as a prostitute.

A second man - known as "Benny" - remains at large. Gjerji Mungiovi-Cuka, 19, of Caldicot, is on trial and denies trafficking for sexual exploitation.

The jury was told on Thursday that the three Albanian men bought the woman in London for 5,000 after she was smuggled into Britain from the Lithuanian capital of Vilnius.

Prosecutor Daniel Williams told the court: "This is a case of people trafficking.

"She was treated as a commodity by a group of men and sold for 5,000. She was forced to hand over all her earnings to the men who controlled her."

'Badly abused'

Mr Williams added: "She was taken to Cardiff where she lived with Likcani, 20, and Benny.

"She was badly abused by the pair who forced her to have sex and subjected her to violence.

"It was necessary for her to be controlled by the men."

The court heard the woman was forced to work at Cardiff brothels named Executive Sauna in Whitchurch Road, No 19 in Bute Street and Abygale's in Woodville Road.

Mr Williams said that half the money went to the brothel with the remainder - more than 1,200 a week - went to Benny.

Mungiovi-Cuka denies trafficking the woman in the UK for sexual exploitation.

It is alleged that he drove the woman to brothels but he insists he had no idea she was working as a prostitute and believed the woman to be 'Benny's' girlfriend.

As a result of a police operation the woman was taken into protective custody in early April.

The trial continues.



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