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NZ's first people trafficker sentenced

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 14/12/2016 Sean Martin
Jail © Getty Images Jail

A man who lured migrant workers into the country, only to exploit them for cheap labour and send them home nearly penniless, has been jailed to close to 10 years.

Feroz Ali, 46, in September became for the first person in New Zealand convicted of people trafficking after bringing 15 Fijian workers illegally into the country.

They were then subjected to exploitative working conditions on farms in the Bay of Plenty between 2013 and 2015.

Justice Paul Heath sentenced Ali to nine years and six months' jail on 57 charges at the High Court at Auckland on Thursday.

He said the Fijian man with New Zealand residency had targeted vulnerable villagers only looking for money to improve their lives and their communities.

"It is an abhorrent crime. It is a crime against human dignity ... such conduct denigrates human life," he said.

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