'Slave house' discovered on quiet Brisbane street

Max Futcher, 7 News

Neighbours of an alleged slave house on Brisbane's southside say they had no idea 27 people were crammed into the Calamvale home.

A respectable street in Brisbane that looked like any other, with tidy yards and quiet neighbours.

Except this street in Calamvale was home to an alleged slave house running a phone scam around the clock.

Police and border force officers raided the house yesterday and found 27 Taiwanese nationals forced to work the phones.

Police raided an alleged slave house on a quiet street in Brisbane's southside. Photo: 7News
Police raided an alleged slave house on a quiet street in Brisbane's southside. Photo: 7News

"Cops came down and said there was people trafficking,” said one neighbour.

“Like 25 people inside. Never suspected a thing."

People rarely ventured outside the house, but inside, sources claimed the house was an illegal call centre.

In one room, there were people who posed as Chinese government bureaucrats, calling Chinese targets to advise they were wanted for money laundering.

In a second room, another slave would act as a police officer and extract hefty fake fines.

This scam had two layers of victims: those defrauded, and those on temporary visas being threatened and imprisoned.

The property's owner was overseas when the police raid took place and it was believed he knew nothing about the scheme.

His friend, Mohsen Henen, came by to check the rental house and was shocked at the scene unfolding.

"I want to know what is happening exactly, is the house trashed or intact? Police said it's okay," said Mr Henen.

It could not be seen from outside whether or not the house was thrashed because every window had been blacked out.

At first glance, there seemed to be nothing unusual about the house, but on closer inspection, there were security cameras on the building, including one hidden in a pot plant.

Tradies in the street said they never saw anyone at the house.

"Nothing, never, no movement at all," said one.

"Nothing unusual except if you look closely the windows are all blocked," said another.

One man was taken away for questioning but no charges have yet been laid.

Initially, four people were to be deported.

It was unclear if they were slaves or captors.