False arrests happen to us, too

Please read and forward widely!

The full statement is published here. Please read, link, tweet, circulate:
http://www.harlots-parlour.com/2010/07/false-arrests-happen-to-us-too.html

Summary:

Sometimes prostitution laws are used against people who are not engaged in prostitution. This has been happening in gay porn shops around New York, and we applaud the lawsuit regarding these false arrests. However, we hope the victims appreciate how unjust these laws are when prostitutes are arrested.

False arrests happen to sex workers every day. You may have a prostitution record and still be caught in a sweep when you’re not actively soliciting. You may be falsely charged when your workplace is raided.

IF YOU HAVE BEEN falsely arrested in New York, contact the Sex Workers Project at the Urban Justice Center for legal assistance and advice:
http://www.sexworkersproject.org

+1-646-602-5617

The Sex Workers Project offers legal help to people who may be profiled as sex workers, no matter their situation. SWP welcomes *anyone* who is arrested under these laws. You can also send an email to PONY[AT]panix.com with “SWP” in the subject line and we will refer you.

Stop the arrests! Repeal the prostitution laws!

PONY[AT]panix.com

UK: Police boost funds from assets taken in raids on prostitutes

The English Collective of Prostitutes says a ‘moral crusade’ is under way based on the mistaken belief that sex workers are all controlled by criminal gangs

Jamie Doward
The Observer, Sunday 25 April 2010

An increasing number of prostitutes who work from home, often for safety reasons, are being prosecuted, according to the organisation that represents English sex workers.

The English Collective of Prostitutes (ECP) says the women face up to seven years in prison if found guilty under brothel-keeping charges. It blames the trend on politicians leading a misplaced “moral crusade” against prostitution that it says is driving the industry further underground.

The collective says the case of Claire Finch, who will appear at Luton crown court tomorrow to deny charges of brothel-keeping, is a typical example of how changes in attitudes to prostitution have resulted in more Continue reading

Phoenix Woman Obviously Linked Falsely to “Desert Divas” Prostitution Ring Sues Maricopa County Attorney’s Office

By James King, Tuesday, Jan. 12 2010 @ 2:58PM

Victoria Aguayo was arrested, indicted, and nearly prosecuted for her “role” in the infamous “Desert Divas” prostitution ring, according to a lawsuit she’s filed in Maricopa County Superior Court.

Problem is: Aguayo was not a “desert diva,” and the evidence suggesting she was is laughable.

On one of the “Desert Divas’” many Web sites, the agency advertised an “escort” named “Tia.” The site described Tia as “thin, white, and blonde,” with a tattoo on her stomach that is clearly visible in the topless photo of the woman that Aguayo’s lawyer kindly sent New Times. Continue reading

Manitoba: Hotels to watch for sex exploitation

Last Updated: Wednesday, March 10, 2010 | 6:05 PM CT

CBC News

The Manitoba government and the provincial hotel industry are teaming up in an effort to crack down on child sexual exploitation.

Wednesday, the province said staff at hotels will be trained to spot situations where a child might be at risk of being exploited by a guest and how to notify authorities of their suspicions.

‘There should be jail time. There should be huge penalties. There should be fines’—Rebecca, a former sex-trade worker

“We’re working with the hospitality industry and putting abusers on notice that people aren’t going to look the other way when they bring these young victims into hotels,” Gord Mackintosh, the provincial family services minister said. Continue reading

Pattaya Police clear Pattaya Beach of suspected Prostitutes

25th February 2010

Following orders from the new Pattaya Police Chief, Police Colonel Nantawoot, a team of Pattaya Police Officers assisted by civil volunteers, known in Thai as “O-Po-Po-Lor”, conducted a late night operation on Wednesday to clear Pattaya Beach of Prostitutes and others suspected of loitering with intent to engage in anti-social or criminal activity. A total of 60 people were rounded-up, including 20 transsexuals and 40 women. All were charged with offences relating to loitering with intent and prostitution and paid a small fine before being released back onto the Beach where they presumably continued with whatever they were doing prior to their arrest.

See original at Pattaya One news

The numbers of sex trafficking victims are exaggerated

Figures relating to sex work and trafficking have been fudged by mainstream media, conservative feminists and career politicians. The numbers of people who are victims of sex slavery and trafficking are far lower than what is generally reported, writes Elena Jeffreys.

A startling report by investigative journalist Nick Davies for The Guardian last October, Inquiry fails to find single trafficker who forced anybody into prostitution, has shocked English policy makers and created a new war of words over migration, sex work and exploitation. Numerous opinion pieces, first hand accounts and rampant moralising followed The Guardian’s coverage of the issue between October and November last year, but Davies’ articles remains an important contribution to understanding the figure-fudging in relation to sex work and trafficking.

Davies writes that politicians and the media have been exaggerating the numbers of sex workers who are victims of sex slavery and trafficking. He goes on to compare the exaggerated numbers of trafficked sex workers with other government lies including weapons of mass destruction, and the sexed up policy dossiers that rationalised UK’s hawkish actions in relation to Iraq. Continue reading

UK: Court rejects undercover sex case in Nottingham

Wednesday, 10 February 2010

A man should not have been prosecuted for asking a woman for sex in a Nottingham red light district, a High Court judge has ruled.

The man was arrested for a public nuisance offence by an undercover police officer, in Mapperley Road.

The case, from July 2008, had been thrown out by magistrates previously, but prosecutors tried to reopen it.

At the High Court earlier, Lord Justice Elias criticised prosecutors for trying to criminalise lawful conduct.

‘Quite hopeless’

The police sting operation took place after complaints from Mapperley residents about the impact of prostitution in the area.

A police officer posed as “Sarah”, a prostitute, and agreed a price for sex with the man after he approached her.
Magistrates cleared him of any offence, ruling he had done nothing wrong.

But the Director of Public Prosecutions tried to re-open the case in the High Court.

However, Lord Justice Elias said the attempt was “quite hopeless” and upheld the ruling a single incident of asking a woman for sex in a known red light district could not amount to a nuisance.

He added “a single, otherwise lawful, act” does not become a criminal offence just because other people are carrying out “similar, otherwise lawful, activity” in the same area.

Observing prosecuting authorities were using “wholly artificial” concepts to criminalise lawful conduct which they considered to be “reprehensible”, Lord Justice Elias urged all courts to have “no truck with it”.

See original at BBC

German brothels raided in trafficking probe

Search of 600 establishments turns up 100 women from West Africa
Last Updated: Wednesday, February 3, 2010 | 11:30 AM ET
CBC News

German authorities say they have searched around 600 brothels across the country in an effort to track down women who may have been smuggled from West Africa as part of an international human trafficking ring.

The Federal Criminal Police Office said Wednesday that Tuesday evening’s raids turned up more than 100 women from West Africa and that there were indications that some were victims of human trafficking.

German investigators say the nationwide crackdown follows investigations that suggest a network of West Africans active in Germany and other European countries is involved in prostitution, human trafficking, passport forgery and other illegal activity. Continue reading

Her crime? Sex work in New Orleans

By: Jordan Flaherty, Contributing Writer
Posted: Monday, January 18, 2010 10:43 am
(Special to The Louisiana Weekly from ColorLines Magazine)

Tabitha has been working as a prostitute in New Orleans since she was 13. Now 30 years old, she can often be found working on a corner just outside of the French Quarter. A small and slight white woman, she has battled both drug addiction and illness and struggles every day to find a meal or a place to stay for the night.

These days, Tabitha, who asked that her real name not be used in this story, has yet another burden: a stamp printed on her driver’s license labels her a sex offender. Her crime? Sex work.

New Orleans city police and the district attorney’s office are using a state law written for child molesters to charge hundreds of sex workers like Tabitha as sex offenders. The law, which dates back to 1805, makes it a crime against nature to engage in “unnatural copulation”-a term New Orleans cops and the district attorney’s office have interpreted to mean anal or oral sex. Sex workers convicted of breaking this law are charged with felonies, issued longer jail sentences and forced to register as sex offenders. They must also carry a driver’s license with the label “sex offender” printed on it. Continue reading

Thailand: Police Crackdown On Foreign Operated Sex Bars

PATTAYA: — Informed sources from several police divisions have told the Pattaya Times that a very serious crackdown will begin next month to catch foreign business people who are financial backers of gay bars, beer bars and a go-gos where there is sex for sale in Pattaya.

These bars charge a “bar fine” to the customer and let the employee leave for the night or a “short time” usually about two to three hours. It is suspected that many of these rendezvous are sexually related, police said. Police investigations will determine who pays the bills and gets the profits. If the person is a foreigner then their visa will be revoked and they will be expelled from the Kingdom. If it is a Thai they will be arrested if sex is for sale. There is much concern about organized crime in the nightlife venues, said one official. Continue reading

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