Trial underway in human trafficking case

A human trafficking case involving two B.C. men and a London, Ont. woman began Tuesday with one of the accused choosing to plead guilty.

Meaz Nour-Eldin, 25, who went by the nickname “Streets” pleaded guilty to one count of trafficking in persons for exploitation.

However, a trial began for the other two, Elkan Vyizigaro, 25 — also known by the street name “Lavish” — pleaded not guilty to seven human trafficking related charges, while Jamie Ryckman, 26, pleaded not guilty to two similar counts.

When testimony began, the female victim who cannot be identified told the court how she was drawn into the sex trade in fall 2019.

She said, “I was not committed to be a part of this at all.” The woman testified that over time the situation turned fearful with Streets and Lavish, telling the court, “I had received threats...They were threatening to break my jaw.”

She said after her first sexual encounter, she was supposed to receive half of the cash but said, “He [Streets] said, ‘Give me all of the money right now.’”

While giving evidence the woman at the centre of the case was in another room and appeared by video in court. Throughout her testimony she appeared calm, and her evidence resumes on Wednesday.

The trial is slated to last two weeks.