Winnipeg man arrested in human trafficking investigation gets 3 years in jail

A 33-year-old Winnipeg man who was arrested last year after a two-year police investigation into human trafficking has now been sentenced to three years in jail —  one of the first lengthy sentences for the charge in Manitoba, Winnipeg police say.

The investigation began in 2019 into a person who police believed was recruiting young women to provide sexual services for hire.

The Winnipeg Police Service’s counter-exploitation unit identified two victims recruited by the trafficker, after he posted photos of the victims in online advertising for massage services. 

The trafficker was arrested in April 2021, after a search of three rental properties in Winnipeg. 

Ferosh Tailor, 33, was initially charged with procuring a person to provide sexual services, advertising sexual services, sexual assault, and receiving material benefit from sexual services. 

Tailor was sentenced for the receiving material benefit charge last month, police said Friday.

This is the first time a human trafficking investigation in Manitoba has produced a substantial sentence, Staff Sgt. Maria Koniuk said at a news conference.

It’s often very difficult to get a conviction on such charges, said Koniuck, who was formerly with the counter-exploitation unit and was heavily involved in the investigation.

“There’s so much reliance on the victim having to testify,” she said. 

“That’s why knowing this, we wanted to have all the evidence so we could try to minimize the trauma to victims when court proceedings began.”

The news comes a day after Manitoba RCMP announced human trafficking charges against a Quebec man, who was arrested after he was initially stopped for erratic driving in Manitoba.

Police said at the time that it appeared a physical altercation had taken place between the man and his female passenger.

It was later determined the woman was a victim of human trafficking and being taken from Quebec to British Columbia, RCMP said in a news release on Thursday.