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Stagecoach tycoon Ann Gloag worth £730million is charged with human trafficking offences

Bus company tycoon Dame Ann Gloag has been charged as part of a human trafficking probe.

Stagecoach billionaire Dame Ann Gloag (right) with her brother Sir Brian Souter
Stagecoach billionaire Dame Ann Gloag (right) co-founded the company (Daily Record WS)

The Stagecoach co-founder and multimillionaire, 80, was was charged with three others.

Dame Ann, who is one of Scotland’s richest women and charity campaigner, is said to vehemently denies the accusations, a representative for the businesswoman has said tonight.

Dame Ann voluntarily attended Livingstone Police Station in West Lothian before being charged the same day.

Police Scotland has confirmed the charges, although declined to officially name the four.

A spokesperson for the force told The Mirror tonight: “On January 19, 2023, four individuals were charged in connection with an investigation into alleged human trafficking and immigration offences.

“A report will be sent to the Procurator Fiscal.”

Representatives for the transport tycoon said the investigation came off the back of “malicious allegations” and that the family strongly denied any wrongdoing.

A spokesperson for Dame Ann told The Mirror tonight: “Whilst we cannot comment on the details of an ongoing investigation, Dame Ann Gloag strongly disputes the malicious allegations that have been made against her, her foundation and members of her family, and will vigorously defend herself and the work of her foundation to protect her legacy and continue her work helping thousands of people in the UK and abroad every year.”

Dame Ann Gloag (right) founded Stagecoach in 1980
Dame Ann Gloag (right) founded Stagecoach in 1980 (Daily Record)

A source close to Dame Ann told the Mail that she was a victim of “collusion” by eight people. They said a “cock-and-bull story” had been made up.

They said: “This investigation has been a Kafkaesque nightmare for the last two years.”

They said people who Dame Ann “tried to help” had “turned” on her and “colluded in making complaints that were baseless – it is absolutely shocking.”

People brought to Scotland as part of the Dame’s charity work were reported to have made the allegations.

The Scottish Sun reports that Dame Ann’s foundation, the Gloag Foundation, has a number of links with Kenya with a number of students attending courses at Perth College, which is part of the University of the Highlands and Islands.

The probe is being led by the National Human Trafficking Investigation Unit at the Scottish Crime Campus, the Home Office said on Friday evening.

A government spokesman said the Home Office can’t comment on individual cases but told The Mirror an investigation was ongoing.

The Home Office spokesperson added: “We have laws in place across the UK to tackle modern slavery and our partners are working closely with counterparts overseas, including from Kenya, to ensure those responsible are brought to justice.”

Born in Perth, Dame Ann Gloag co-founded the Stagecoach group in 1980, running buses between Dundee and London.

She was awarded Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire in the 2019 New Year’s honours list for her charitable work overseas.

The Gloag Foundation says it supports “projects that prevent or relieve poverty and encourage the advancement of education, health and religion in the UK and overseas”.

Dame Ann is reported to have a joint net worth of £730m along with her brother.

Stagecoach was contacted for comment.

Perth College and UHI were both contacted for comment.

 

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EYES ON TRAFFICKING

This “Eyes on Trafficking” story is reprinted from its original online location.

ABOUT PBJ LEARNING

PBJ Learning is a leading provider of online human trafficking training, focusing on awareness and prevention education. Their interactive Human Trafficking Essentials online course is used worldwide to educate professionals and individuals how to recognize human trafficking and how to respond to potential victims. Learn on any web browser (even your mobile phone) at any time.

More stories like this can be found in your PBJ Learning Knowledge Vault.