Authorities in Brazil say in 2005 they freed thousands of workers from employers who forced them to work against their will.

The labor ministry said Monday that last year 4,133 workers were freed from slave-like or degrading working conditions by special government teams.

During the year, the teams checked 183 farms and ranches across the country.

The greatest number of unwilling laborers, over 1,000, were found in the state of Para, an eastern Amazon state, notorious for corruption.

Some information for this report was provided by AP.