Rome

Rome youngsters 'enslaved' by gang

Parents robbed of gold jewelry, mobile phones by bullied kids

Rome youngsters 'enslaved' by gang

Rome, April 4 - Five juveniles and one man are under investigation in what police said Thursday was a ring of bullies who used Facebook and other means to terrorize and enslave other youngsters over several years. Using violence as well as threats, the gang forced their victims to steal valuables ranging from mobile phones and perfumes to gold jewelry, designer shoes and other accessories. One victim was even forced to break into his parents' safe to steal gold bracelets to meet the gang's demand for money ranging from 100 to 300 euros. Police said the bullied victims were essentially forced into slavery, buying food and drinks for the bullies and running errands. Anyone who rebelled was threatened, beaten, and subjected to psychological abuse that included appearing in videos where the victims were forced to denounce themselves as worthless.

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