A 16-year-old Vietnamese boy was discovered hiding under a bush after fleeing human traffickers
The youth is understood to have leapt from a car as it was being driven through west Dunbartonshire.
Despite injuring his leg in the fall, the youth still then managed to run for an hour to elude his abductors before collapsing exhausted in undergrowth.
A passer-by eventually spotted the teenager "cowering" in the bushes near Overtoun House in Dumbarton and alerted the authorities.
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Subsequent inquiries have revealed the youth – described as a "smashing wee boy" – arrived in Scotland from his native country via Russia.
A young Vietnamese boy – 16 years old – came into our care having been trafficked from Vietnam to Russia
Chief Supt Grant Manders
It is not known precisely why he was brought her but Chinese Triad gangs who operate the majority of cannabis factories here are known to predominantly use young Vietnamese males to run their operations on a day-to-day basis.
The teenager is now in the care of West Dunbartonshire Council's social work department following his discovery on Monday, January 16.
Police have appealed to anyone who has information to contact them.
Police Scotland Chief Supt Grant Manders
Last night, Police Scotland confirmed the details of the incident and said that inquiries were continuing
Ch Supt Grant Manders said: "A young Vietnamese boy – 16 years old – came into our care having been trafficked from Vietnam to Russia.
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"Smashing wee boy escaped his traffickers up in West Dunbartonshire and was found cowering in the bushes having escaped from wherever he might have been going."
His colleague, Det Con Andy Docherty added: "He was found in quite a distressed state. We quickly established that he was of Vietnamese origin and he stated that he was subject to a human trafficking.
"His welfare is paramount. Inquiries are ongoing."
Last month, new figures from the National Crime Agency (NCA) revealed crime gangs were smuggling sex slaves into Scotland from Africa, Asia and eastern Europe.
A total of 34 potential victims were identified between April and June last year – a 17 per cent increase, the organisation said.
According to the NCA, 26 of the victims identified were adults from countries such as China, Albania as ell as Albania.
Speaking at the time, Detective Chief Inspector Stuart Houston, head of Police Scotland's human trafficking unit, said: "We will target those who control, abuse and exploit others by working to ensure that Scotland is a hostile environment to this sickening trade."
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