Thomas Joseph Carroll 2010 October 19 Court of Appeal

The appeal was refused. Carroll ran 35 brothels across Ulster and Eire and then ran them from Wales. He was convicted of count of conspiracy to control prostitution.

This post will be referenced in [3] Cathy Fox Blog to be published Sex Slavery – Slave Girl Return to Hell by Sarah Forsyth and Tim Tate

For indexes of Court of Appeal Documents and newspaper articles:

An Index / Timeline of Newspaper Articles on Cathy Fox Blog [1]

An Index / Timeline of Court Appeal Documents on Cathy Fox Blog [2]

[2010] EWCA Crim 2463

No: 201001253 A8


Royal Courts of Justice


London, WC2A 2LL

Tuesday, 19 October 2010

Before: Lord Justice Hooper

Mr Justice Butterfield

Mr Justice Kenneth Parker


Thomas Joseph Carroll

Mr G Walters appeared on behalf of the Applicant

Computer Aided Transcript of the Stenograph Notes of Word Wave
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(As Approved by the Court)

1. LORD JUSTICE HOOPER: I will ask Butterfield J to give the judgment of
the court.

2. MR JUSTICE BUTTERFIELD: Thomas Carroll pleaded guilty shortly before his
trial in the Crown Court at Cardiff to a count of conspiracy to control
prostitution, for which he was sentenced to five years’ imprisonment, and
conspiracy to money launder, for which he received a consecutive sentence
of two years’ imprisonment. He now renews his application for leave to
appeal against sentence following refusal by the single judge.

3. There were two co-accused. Shamiela Clark, the applicant’s wife, pleaded
guilty to conspiracy to control prostitution for gain and conspiracy to
money launder. She received a sentence of two and a half year years’
imprisonment in relation to the prostitution, with one-year imprisonment
consecutive for money laundering, a total of three and a half years. Toma
Carroll, the daughter of the applicant, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to
launder money and was sentenced to two years’ imprisonment.

4. The applicant and his co-accused ran a large-scale and highly lucrative
prostitution business in Ireland, operating on both sides of the Irish
border. Initially the operation was run from Ireland by the applicant and
his family, but in 2006 the applicant and his wife were arrested by the
Garda. In interview they accepted they had been running a prostitution
business, but they were then released on bail in Ireland while further
enquiries were made and decisions reached as to how the matter should
proceed. At that point the applicant and his wife moved to Wales. There was
no discernible interruption and they continued to operate that same
prostitution business from the applicant’s house in Castle Martin in

5. The prostitutes were mainly foreign nationals. They were moved from one
brothel to another on a regular basis. It was the case for the prosecution
that they were exploited, managed and controlled. Many of them were
vulnerable. They were allowed to keep some of the money from their clients,
but essentially their lives were taken over by the regime set up by the

6. The system operated by the applicant, with the assistance of his wife
and a number of others, was as follows. Prostitutes were recruited by
placing advertisements in British newspapers. In addition, some of the
prostitutes were vulnerable women, who had been trafficked into Ireland,
although not by the applicant. Thereafter, these women found themselves
working as prostitutes for the applicant’s business and having to pay
substantial sums to the people that originally trafficked them into
Ireland. Rented premises were obtained for use by the prostitutes, often in
false names.

7. The availability of prostitutes in a particular town was advertised on
the internet using a professional website. Each apartment used by the
applicant had a separate mobile telephone number, and those numbers were
kept in a bank of telephones at the applicant’s house in Wales. Once a telephone rang, the town or the apartment would be instantly recognised from the number being used. The
prostitutes themselves did not have those numbers, only the applicant or
his wife. When a client called one of the numbers, he would be given
directions to the apartment by the applicant’s wife. A prostitute was then
called and told to expect a client. When the client left, the prostitute
had to ring the applicant’s wife, who was thus able to make a record of the
time that the client was there and accordingly how much he should have paid
the prostitute. In that way the prostitutes had no control over their own
hours, and little scope for making any extra money for themselves. The
money they had received from their clients would be collected from them by
others engaged by the applicant. The money then found its way into the
account of the applicant’s daughter in Ireland. She would then transfer
that money into an account to which her father had access.

8. When the applicant’s home in Wales was searched, police found sheets
with directions to different addresses in Ireland, books containing details
of the rented flats and apartments, lists of agencies and telephone
numbers, descriptions of prostitutes and sheets with rules for running a
brothel, including the rates to be charged.

9. When the applicant was arrested in December 2008, his home bore all the
hallmarks of the headquarters of the business, and clearly he was the
directing mind of it and, by all accounts, a forceful personality. When the
applicant was arrested a key to a safety deposit box was found. The box was
with a company in Manchester. When the box was opened, there were invoices
and documents relating to properties in Bulgaria, South Africa and the
United Kingdom, together with 20,000 euros in cash.

10. The applicant was not convicted of any offence in relation to people
trafficking, and at the sentencing hearing it was not part of the
prosecution’s case that he had been so involved. Indeed, clearly some of
the women used in the prostitution went into the enterprise in the full
knowledge of what was happening and the life they were embarking upon.
However, there were others who were unwilling and unhappy. In particular,
there were a number of young Nigerian women who had been tricked into
prostitution. Some of them had been subjected to a witchcraft-type ritual
in Nigeria and then made to swear to pay a debt to their traffickers. They
were then trafficked into Ireland on false promises of legitimate work.

11. When they got to Ireland they were put into one of the applicant’s
apartments and told they had to work as prostitutes to pay off their debts.
They were regularly moved from apartment to apartment between the north and
south of Ireland depending on where the demand was.

12. It was the case for the prosecution that the applicant was aware, at
least in general terms, of the sort of pressures experienced by some of the

13. When he came to sentence, the judge expressed the matter thus:

“… young and vulnerable women from Nigeria were deceived into travelling to
Ireland by prospects of a better life. When they arrived on false papers
they were even more vulnerable; they had nothing to live on, nowhere to stay and they were, in the main, unlawfully in Ireland. I am not sentencing you … for trafficking those women. And I accept that you were ignorant of the personal circumstances of the women who worked in your brothels. I also accept that … you were not responsible for any violence or threats of violence against those women.

That said, the ruthless people who did traffic those women found you and
your organisation ready to accept those women into your business with no
questions asked … You did not ask and you did not care what personal
tragedies lay behind those women submitting to prostitution. You were,
however, willing to exploit them when they came into Ireland … and were
willing to employ others who did have direct contact with the prostitutes …
I accept that you did not coerce them if by coercion is meant the use of or
threat of force. But if you choose to close your eyes to the behaviour of
people you relied on to bring likely prostitutes into your business or to
have contact with them for the benefit of your business, you must share
some of the responsibility for that activity.”

14. In opening the case for the prosecution, counsel illustrated what had
happened to some of the vulnerable prostitutes by detailing their graphic
and distressing accounts, but in the light of the judge’s clear finding
that he was not dealing with the applicant on the basis that he was a party
to such practices, or that he knew the personal circumstances of any of the
prostitutes working for him, it is unnecessary to rehearse those details in
this judgment.

15. That said, it is clear there was an undercurrent of violence or the
threat of violence to keep the women in check. The applicant pleaded guilty
on the basis that he did not coerce any person into prostitution and did
not use violence against any person. A number of the more vulnerable
prostitutes spoke of occasions when they experienced threats of violence in
order to compel them to hand over takings from their clients. In a business
of this nature, it is simply incredible to suggest that the applicant was
not aware in general terms of the climate of fear created in order to keep
the prostitutes compliant and submissive.

16. The scale of the operation was very considerable. There were something
like 35 brothels in both the north and south of Ireland, and many, many
prostitutes controlled by the applicant.

17. When the applicant and his wife moved to Wales the business needed
someone on the ground in Ireland so that their account could be used for
the deposit of the takings from the prostitutes and thereafter the transfer
of those proceeds elsewhere. That someone was Toma Carroll. Cash was paid
into her account by the prostitutes and the collectors. She then
transferred the money to an account her father could access. The scale of
the operation can be seen by the money passing through her account: in
2006, 111,000 euros; in 2007, 1.14 million euros; and up to the end of
September 2008, 500,000 euros. The overwhelming majority of that money was
connected to the prostitution business. Between June 2007 and October 2008,
864,000 euros was transferred into the applicant’s Credit Union account. That money in turn was then used for property investments in the United Kingdom and abroad.

18. The applicant is 48 years of age. He has no previous convictions. His
pleas of guilty were tendered only at trial despite the fact that the
evidence against him had been overwhelming.

19. On behalf of the applicant, it is submitted by Mr Walters that the
sentence of five years’ imprisonment on count 1 was itself manifestly
excessive, that a consecutive sentence in respect of count 5 (the money
laundering count) was wrong in all the circumstances, and finally, that the
judge failed to have proper regard to the principle of totality.

20. As to whether a consecutive sentence was appropriate, the sentencing
judge properly directed himself on the approach he should take in
determining whether any sentence he imposed should be concurrent or
consecutive. There will be cases where a money laundering charge may well
not add to the overall criminality disclosed in the substantive offences
themselves. However, in this case the business involved relatively
sophisticated channelling and disposition of the proceeds from the criminal
activities. The judge concluded that the organisation of the money
laundering business and the amount of criminal money that was being
diverted from Ireland and away from the authorities there, and additionally
thereafter out of the United Kingdom, was such that the money laundering
count added significantly to the overall culpability of the enterprise. It
was a mechanism enabling the profits from the unlawful trade in Ireland to
be moved into another jurisdiction. In our judgment, the judge was entitled
to reach that conclusion and a consecutive sentence was correct in

21. We turn to consider the issue of totality. Clearly the judge was well
aware of the need to ensure that the total sentence reflected not only the
full criminality exposed in respect of the applicant, but also any
mitigation available to him, in particular his late plea of guilty and his
previous good character.

22. In the judgment of this court there were a number of seriously
aggravating factors. First, there was the sheer size of the enterprise and
the vast illegal profits made from it. Second, the offending was aggravated
by the fact that the applicant, having been arrested in Ireland and
released on bail, chose to move to Wales and continue precisely the same
activity without so much as drawing breath. Third, whilst the applicant
himself did not coerce any person into prostitution and did not use
violence against any of the prostitutes, on the evidence there were clearly
those who did, and whilst there was no evidence the applicant knew
specifically about the coercion of a particular prostitute or of violence
or threats of violence used against any such prostitute, he took no steps
to find out what the position was, employing people to collect money from
the prostitutes and to ensure that they complied with the requirements
demanded of them. At best he closed his eyes to the obvious risk of force
and the threat of force being used against the prostitutes if they stepped
out of line.

23. This was an extremely serious conspiracy, extending over many months,
in which very large sums of money were obtained by using, in part at least,
vulnerable women who were simply being exploited in order to provide the
applicant with large sums of money, which he then successfully laundered
and removed from the jurisdiction.

24. In our judgment, the total sentence here was not manifestly excessive
in any way and the application is accordingly refused.

Please note that victims of abuse may be triggered by reading this information. The Sanctuary for the Abused [A] has advice on how to prevent triggers.  National Association for People Abused in Childhood [B] has a freephone helpline and has links to local support groups. Other useful sites are One in Four [C]  and Havoca [D]. Useful post on Triggers [E]  from SurvivorsJustice [F] blog. Jim Hoppers pages on Mindfulness [G]  and Meditation [H] may be useful.


[1] Cathy Fox Blog 2015 May 8 [constantly updated] Index Timeline of Newspaper Articles on Cathy Fox Blog

[2] Cathy Fox Blog 2015 May 8 [constantly updated] An Index / Timeline of Court Appeal Documents on Cathy Fox Blog

[3] Cathy Fox Blog to be published Sex Slavery – Slave Girl Return to Hell by Sarah Forsyth and Tim Tate


[A] Sanctuary for the Abused


[C] One in Four

[D] Havoca

[E] SurvivorsJustice Triggers post

[F] SurvivorsJustice Blog

[G] Jim Hopper Mindfulness

[H] Jim Hopper Meditation

This is all written in good faith but if there is anything that needs to be corrected please email

cathyfox the truth will out, the truth will shout, the truth will set us free

About cathy fox blog on Child Abuse

the truth will out, the truth will shout, the truth will set us free...
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4 Responses to Thomas Joseph Carroll 2010 October 19 Court of Appeal

  1. Pingback: An Index and Timeline of Court & Court of Appeal, EWCA Documents on Cathy Fox Blog | cathyfox blog

  2. Pingback: Sex Slavery – Slave Girl Return to Hell by Sarah Forsyth and Tim Tate | cathy fox blog on child abuse

  3. Pingback: cathy fox sex crime | HOLLIE GREIG JUSTICE : SUPPORTING FRESH START @FSFtruthjustice

  4. Pingback: Sex Slavery – Slave Girl Return to Hell by Sarah Forsyth and Tim Tate | HOLLIE GREIG JUSTICE : SUPPORTING FRESH START @FSFtruthjustice

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