Three children from Vietnam who were trafficked to the UK and forced to work for criminal gangs have had their criminal convictions quashed.
The children were arrested after police raids on cannabis factories and later convicted of drug offences.
The judge said they were victims of a “vile trade in people” and should not have been prosecuted.
The Crown Prosecution Service said it would not have bought charges if it had had all the evidence at the time.
The Court of Appeal overturned the convictions and issued guidance to courts about how potential trafficking victims should be treated by the criminal justice system.
Barrister Parosha Chandran, a lawyer for one of the victims, said the cases “represent miscarriages of justice”.
“They were prosecuted, convicted, and punished by imprisonment for the very crimes that their traffickers forced them to commit or they were compelled to commit as a result of the trafficking.”
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