Europe

Spain busts sex trafficking ring based on victim hotline tip

Police in Spain say they have arrested 21 people and freed four women while breaking up an alleged human trafficking ring.

The country's national police said in a statement Saturday that the bust in the southern city of Malaga happened after a victim called an anti-sex trafficking hotline saying she was being forced into prostitution and to consume illegal drugs.

Police say the ring was led by a woman who operated four locations where victims were forced to prostitute themselves in "marathonic sessions."

One of the freed women first was exploited when she was a minor.

Spanish police say the anonymous hotline established three years ago has received more than 1,800 calls this year, leading to about 400 interventions by the police.