A man has been charged with modern slavery by York police.

The news comes as the hunt for two Vietnamese girls missing from York goes on.

The man was arrested in the early hours of Tuesday (July 13) at a location which a police spokesman said “cannot be disclosed at this stage as part of the ongoing investigation”.

He has been charged with two counts of modern slavery and is due to appear in court today.

Concern growing

The missing teenagers: Luong Phan (left) and Tram Le

Luong Phan, 15, and 14-year-old Tram Le were last seen near to York Minster at around 12.30pm on Sunday (July 9).

It is believed that the two girls, originally from Vietnam but now living in the York area, left the city shortly after the last sighting of them in a taxi.

Thi Luong Phan – who uses her middle name Luong – and Tram Le remain missing. There are a number of active enquiries ongoing to locate the two girls.

Chief Inspector Allan Wescott of North Yorkshire Police, and one of the officers leading the search, said:

There have been a number of developments in this case which has seen one man arrested on suspicious of modern slavery offences.

Whilst this is a positive step towards finding the two girls we are still trying to locate their whereabouts as quickly, and as safely, as possible.

The last sighting of the girls was on Sunday evening and as each day goes by our concern for the two girl’s welfare grows.

He thanked everyone who has shared the police appeal or who has provided information to support the investigation.

“Please be assured we are doing everything we can to bring these two girls home safely,” Ch Insp Wescott said.

“We urge the public to keep a look out and contact us as a matter of urgency if you see them, or know where they may be.

“Your call, however insignificant it may seem, could be critical in helping to find them.”

If you have any immediate sightings of the two girls please call 999.

If you have seen the two girls, or have any information which could help the investigation please contact police using the numbers below.

north-yorkshire-police-logo-25How to help the police

Call North Yorkshire Police on 101, select option 1 and ask for the Force Control Room
Quote reference number 12170120099