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News of raids, prosecutions, robberies, assaults etc from the world of punting

 


‘We need to target men who use the services of prostitutes’, claims Dundee councillor

Published in The Evening Telegraph
18th February 2017


Scotland
Men who seek out the services of sex workers should be targeted in a bid to crack down on the problem, according to a senior councillor. Alan Ross, community safety and public protection convener for Dundee City Council, also said more should be done to educate men who pay for sex as to why what they are doing is wrong.

Mr Ross spoke out following a special investigation by the Tele in which one woman on Arbroath Road offered our reporter sex for £40 to feed her drug habit. It followed a public meeting on Monday at which Arbroath Road residents told police and other authorities that the areas around their homes had become a “red light zone”.

Mr Ross said: “The solution is about targeting the people using these women for sex. A strong message needs to be sent that people should not pay for sex. We need to speak to the men using these women and try to educate them as to why their behaviour is wrong as well as using the law to punish them. It is the abuse of vulnerable women.

“Our approach at this time remains about helping these women and offering them advice, whether that’s from the police, the council or charities, to help them get out of this way of life and support them. One of the key focuses also has to be targeting the people using these women for sex — because without them there would be no prostitution.”

Mr Ross said women who find themselves working as prostitutes often find themselves doing so because they have no other option. He said: “It’s not a career anyone would go for by choice — these women do it because they are vulnerable and desperate.”

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Coventry one of worst places in country for street prostitution

Published in The Coventry Telegraph
17th February 2017


West Midlands
Coventry has one of the highest rates of persistent street prostitution recorded in the country, according to government figures. Latest crime figures from the Home Office show the city had a high rate of soliciting for prostitution in the 12 months up to and including September 2016.

There were 15 cases recorded by Coventry Police. That amounts to one instance of soliciting for prostitution recorded for every 23,026 people living in the city - one of the highest rates in the country.

The figure is nearly five times higher than the national average. Across England and Wales there were 524 cases of soliciting for prostitution recorded by police. That’s one case for every 110,468 people.

Cllr Jim O’Boyle (Lab, St Michaels), whose Coventry City Council ward includes Hillfields where prostitutes work on the streets, said: “I can’t accept that it’s as bad as Birmingham or Manchester. I just can’t accept that, but there is a problem that should be tackled. It’s not acceptable for residents walking down the streets on their ordinary businesses to be accosted by a kerb crawler looking for business.

“There is a lot of work going on behind the scenes which is important because if somebody is arrested for soliciting they are taken off the streets for a couple of hours while they are processed then later they appear in court and get a fine. Then they have to go back on the streets to earn the money to pay for the fine.”

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Bristol has the highest rate of persistent street prostitution in the country

Published in The Bristol Post
17th February 2017


Bristol
Bristol has the highest rate of prostitutes persistently offering their services on the streets recorded in the country. According to the latest crime figures from the Home Office, the city had a particularly high rate of soliciting for prostitution in the 12 months up to and including September 2016.

Over the course of the year, there were 89 cases of this type of crime recorded by police in Bristol. That translates to one instance of soliciting for prostitution recorded for every 5,049 people living in the city - the highest rate in the country, and 20 times higher than the national average. Across England and Wales, there were 524 cases of soliciting for prostitution recorded by police, or one case for every 110,468 people.

This type of offence is recorded when a person persistently offers their services as a prostitute on a street or public place. Their actions are considered persistent if they are caught doing this on two or more occasions within a period of three months. The figures do not include other crimes that are related to prostitution, such as kerb crawling or keeping a brothel.

However, the Home Office does also provide figures for instances of exploitation of prostitution - which involves children under the age of 18 who are involved in prostitution. There were two cases of exploitation of prostitution recorded by police in Bristol in the 12 months up to including September 2016. In these instances, children under the age of 18 are treated as victims of abuse - it is those who have exploited or coerced them who face prosecution.

In cases of soliciting for prostitution, however, it is the person offering their services who is held responsible for the offence. In general, men and women who are charged with soliciting for prostitution for the first time will usually be cautioned and given encouragement to access support services. If they are charged on multiple occasions, however, they may receive a fine or an anti-social behaviour order.

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