Quebec men charged after allegedly forcing woman to work in sex trade
Paul Johnston, CP24.com
Published Tuesday, November 15, 2016 5:02PM EST
Last Updated Tuesday, November 15, 2016 9:05PM EST
Two Quebec men are facing more than a dozen combined charges after allegedly forcing a 25-year-old woman to work in the sex trade.
An investigation was launched by Toronto police following the hospitalization of the victim in November.
According to police, the series of events began in Montreal in October when the victim was introduced to two men.
The men subsequently convinced the woman to work in the sex trade by promising her a better life and moved her first to Ottawa, and later to Toronto.
Ads offering sexual services were posted on backpage.com, and the money she earned she was forced to turn over to the men. Threats of physical violence were used to exercise control over the victim, police said.
According to investigators, the woman was assaulted and choked by one of the men after refusing to work as an escort on Nov. 6.
She was also stripped of her cellphone, making it impossible to contact her family.
Her injuries – which required hospitalization – were subsequently reported to police.
Later that day, two suspects who were making their way to Quebec were stopped near Long Sault, Ont., by provincial police. Both were arrested and transported back to Toronto.
Police identified the suspects in a news release issued Tuesday afternoon.
Twenty-four-year-old Sifeddine Bilachi is facing nine charges, including trafficking in persons, assault, and overcoming resistance by attempting to choke and suffocate.
Nacim Hamouni, 25, faces six charges including trafficking in persons, advertising another person’s sexual services, and possession of the proceeds of crime.
Both men appeared in court last week.
Anyone with information is asked to contact police at 416-808-7474 or Crime Stoppers at 416-222-TIPS (8477).