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bobbles

Organised crime controls indoor sex market in Bristol

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A Think tank  called the Police foundation has produced a report  The role and impact of organised crime in the local off-street sex market “ (http://www.police-foundation.org.uk/uploads/holding/projects/organised_crime_and_the_adult_sex_market.pdf ) in conjunction with a commercial research organisation Perpetuity Research)  that claims that organised crime is behind most indoor prostitution in Bristol (and by inference in the UK in general). It seems the report was written using “Police intelligence” (an oxymoron if there was one) and no working girls were interviewed-and Saunas and massage parlours not considered.

They claim they see indicators of organised crime in that “ more than one offender linked to management of establishment”, “management of more than one establishment “ linkage to “other organised crime (eg drug supply). They also claim that there is evidence of trafficking “movement of sex workers between brothels”. Their conclusions are “In a single city 65 brothels, linked to 74

offenders, were identified over a two-year period. Over three quarters (77 per cent) displayed links to organised crime groups.

There was a high level of turnover and movement of those working in brothels. In a third (29 per cent) of brothels there was evidence that sex workers’ movements had been controlled.

Organised crime pervades the off-street sex market but was not prioritised for a response by local police teams.

 

The report is a briefing document and they say a fuller report will be published later-but my impression is that this is typical of “research”  produced by commercial outfits-take the money and produce something you can sell to the organisation that commissioned it.

 

Can any of those with experience of the scene in Bristol shed any light on the reports veracity?

Edited by bobbles
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This is a very shoddy piece of research. It would not be accepted from a first-year student at any reputable academic institution. I could write a critique several pages long but I will limit myself to a couple of points. A major problem is the casual association between the factors they attempt to establish as ‘evidence’ of links to "organised crime".

For example, they say that movement of sex workers, among brothels, and that this movement is controlled, in some cases, is evidence of organised crime. I had my house decorated last week. The decorator was working here last week and he is working somewhere else this week. This movement was controlled by his boss, so should we conclude that organised crime is involved in the interior decorating business? They also claim "offenders" are involved in the sex industry and this is evidence of organised crime. They do not say what constitutes and 'offender' - is it someone with a spent conviction for speeding or someone on bail on a GBH charge?

They do not address the deeper problem. Organised crime thrives in criminalised environments because criminals are expert at circumventing the law (eg. prohibition of alcohol in USA). They are also able to provide protection in environments where the regular police force is ineffective, either because the police are incompetent or victims feel unable to access police services. In both these cases, ISTM, that decriminalisation of the sex industry would reduce its attractiveness as a revenue source for organised crime groups.

I am not sure who funded this report, or how much it cost, but if I were paying I would not feel I had received value for money.


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I particularly like this assumption p2 “The business-like structures required to manage brothels so they are profitable and avoid police attention are strong grounds to presume a link to organised crime” This is breath taking in its stupidity.

 

Interestingly one of the authors of the report Martin Gill was professor and head of the Department of criminology at Leicester University where Prof Teela Sanders is newly arrived. Perhaps he should talk to Sanders to find out what a prat he looks.

Edited by bobbles
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