Police in bid to tackle brothels
DETECTIVES are stepping up their campaign to track down and shut illegal brothels as it has been claimed that prostitution could soar in Brent in the run up to the 2012 Olympic Games. Police say they have already discovered women who have been trafficked
DETECTIVES are stepping up their campaign to track down and shut illegal brothels as it has been claimed that prostitution could soar in Brent in the run up to the 2012 Olympic Games.
Police say they have already discovered women who have been trafficked into the borough to work in the sex industry, and claim they have developed a radical new strategy to combat prostitution.
The warning comes as campaigners say Wembley stadium - due to host the football tournaments at the 2012 Olympics - could become a magnet for criminal gangs.
Police now plan to move prostitution higher up their agenda.
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Speaking to The Times, DCI Stevens of Brent police public protection squad, said: "We are aware that countries which have hosted large sporting events have witnessed a large spike in prostitution, which does not disappear once the games are over. That is why we are stepping up efforts to tackle this problem.
"Some of those in prostitution are trafficked women who are scared of what the repercussions of coming forward to the police will be. Some of these women have been raped many times, and we need to raise awareness among people who do use these brothels that these women aren't there of their own free will.
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"That is why we have launched more raids - our Safer Neighbourhood Teams are being sent out on raids at the moment. And we are removing cards from phone booths and are making sure we arrest anyone caught placing cards advertising sex services.
"But prostitution is not, and is unlikely to become, a priority area because it is such a silent crime and our priorities are decided by the government and local authorities to reflect public concerns."
DCI Stevens spoke following the publication of a Brent Council task group report, Services For Women In And Exiting Prostitution, which warns the number of people in the sex industry is likely to rise around Wembley because of the Olympics.