Laura Lee

Police harassment ?

107 posts in this topic

It seems that Grampian & Tayside Police have taken it upon themselves to trace the movements of WG's visiting their areas and pay them a visit. There have been several incidents brought to light over the last few days which include plain clothes police officers arriving at hotels and apartments with details of the ladies working names, sometimes photographic evidence - face pics taken from private galleries on websites.

One lady described how she opened the door presuming it was house-keeping, only to be confronted by officers of the law addressing her by her working name. The room was checked for visitors, she was asked to put her money away in front of one of them (presumably so they couldn't be accused of theft), asked her name, address, place of birth, husband's name and maiden name. After a PNC radio check she was told they were aware of visitors she'd had and her comings and goings of that day. They mentioned management at the hotel had informed them.

However, what followed afterwards is most intriguing and worrying:-

"They then insisted they take a photograph of me. I was informed it was just for their file in case anything should happen to me on future visits. They mentioned they wanted to know who everyone was. This consisted of one of the officers using a video camera and him asking me to state my real name, date of birth and my working name to the camera. They then assisted me as I packed my stuff (hotel management had asked them to ask me to leave) and were very chatty and friendly asking me what I was going to do next. They politely assisted me from the building giving me a card and asking me to call if I was visiting the area again as he wanted to be made aware"

Can anyone shed some light on the legalities involved here ? :)

Scot-Pep, the IUSW and Liberty have been made aware but I would be very grateful for some advice from our resident legal boffins. :rolleyes:

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It seems that Grampian & Tayside Police have taken it upon themselves to trace the movements of WG's visiting their areas and pay them a visit. There have been several incidents brought to light over the last few days which include plain clothes police officers arriving at hotels and apartments with details of the ladies working names, sometimes photographic evidence - face pics taken from private galleries on websites.

One lady described how she opened the door presuming it was house-keeping, only to be confronted by officers of the law addressing her by her working name. The room was checked for visitors, she was asked to put her money away in front of one of them (presumably so they couldn't be accused of theft), asked her name, address, place of birth, husband's name and maiden name. After a PNC radio check she was told they were aware of visitors she'd had and her comings and goings of that day. They mentioned management at the hotel had informed them.

However, what followed afterwards is most intriguing and worrying:-

"They then insisted they take a photograph of me. I was informed it was just for their file in case anything should happen to me on future visits. They mentioned they wanted to know who everyone was. This consisted of one of the officers using a video camera and him asking me to state my real name, date of birth and my working name to the camera. They then assisted me as I packed my stuff (hotel management had asked them to ask me to leave) and were very chatty and friendly asking me what I was going to do next. They politely assisted me from the building giving me a card and asking me to call if I was visiting the area again as he wanted to be made aware"

Can anyone shed some light on the legalities involved here ? :)

Scot-Pep, the IUSW and Liberty have been made aware but I would be very grateful for some advice from our resident legal boffins. :rolleyes:

Sounds a little like an "Urban Legend" if you ask me.

The police have no powers to remove a guest at a hotel unless that guest was committing a criminal offense and indeed she would then be arrested and removed down to the local nick

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I understand that similar things are happening in Hertfordshire - but maybe not quite so intrusive - i.e. without the request for background info and the photographs. It seems that the Police want to keep track of indies and warn them not to work together.

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The police have no powers to remove a guest at a hotel unless that guest was committing a criminal offense and indeed she would then be arrested and removed down to the local nick

The management asked her to leave, via the police. Hotels don't need a reason to ask someone to leave.

Grampian police would be far better off concentrating on the RLD with the amount of robberies, scams, etc going on in the area at the moment, rather than harassing pople who are working perfectly legally.

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They could "ask" me to hop up and down whilst humming Carmina Burana and waving a pair of y-fronts in the air if they wished. Doesn't mean I'd comply. I presume that money had changed hands and equally understand that no offense had been committed.

It's a Civil matter and non of the police's business to intervene. IMHO

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I think Grampian Police are somewhat more moralist ic the legalistic.

Some years ago I arrived fo a week stay in an Aberdeen Hotel, phoned a regular agency number and found myself speaking to a female claiming to be a police officer. She attempted to tell me that booking an outcall escort was against the law! never did find out what had happened to the agency or how his phone was in the possession of the police.

Maybe melanie recollects "Aphrodite".

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The management asked her to leave, via the police. Hotels don't need a reason to ask someone to leave.

Ho, hum! The management asked her to leave, via the police, or the police said to the management, "...and I assume you'll want us to move her on, won't you?"?

If I pay my money (or my card issuer's money) to have the occupation of a room for a night, until 10.00 (or other check-out time) tomorrow, I can just be asked to leave? I have to confess that I've never actually seen the detailed terms of the contract of hebergement, but I'd be very surprised if I could be sent packing at whim? And, in any case, if I could, that would be a civil matter, absolutely nothing to do with the police!

If I'm dealing drugs in the room, the polis will remove me.

If I get a sudden attack of bubonic plague, the NHS will remove me in a green plastic bag.

If I get drunk and noisy, the hotel will probably call the police, but might, just might, try self help and deposit me on the pavement, with my suitcase beside me, but I doubt it.

Unfortunately we do not yet have enough details of these incidents to know what is happening. Were the ladies met on arrival, or after the last "visitor" of the day had departed?

Photographers have a "bust-card" to run through when done over in London (usually) by the Met. I rather think that ladies need just such a card.

Let's start:

Ask: "Are you alleging the commission of a criminal offence?"

If answer other than "Yes": "Then what are you doing here, on private premises?

Ask for Warrant Cards, and make note of details, including not only Officers' tally numbers, but card serial numbers.

If asked for personal details, or to consent to be photographed: "Do you have any statutory or other authority for this?"

If authority cited, consent, stating: "I agree, under protest, on the assumption that the authority you have cited is valid."

If no authority cited: "In that case, I do not consent."

If videoed, start the voice-over: "I am speaking under protest, under compulsion by Sergeant Y and Constable X."

Assuming that every lady's telephone has a camera, worth a try to insist on photographing them.

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is margo mcdonald msp aware of this?

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For ease of reference:

"Anyone touring Scotland particularly Aberdeen especially if you are not alone, please be careful. Last month when I was in Aberdeen I had reception with two policmen at the door of the apartment. Aparently, these two policemen had been appointed a job into looking into the sex industry in Aberdeen. They asked if they could come in - was a bit embarrassed as was with a guy! Anyway, they said I wasnt doing anything wrong but if I had been with another girl, they would have arrested me as working as a brothel. They took the guy that was with me's name and address. He rang me later that afternoon and told me this and that he was a little afraid as he was married.

The police told me that I had to move so I sent them to pay my bill and they gave me a lift. They said I could go back to Aberdeen and not be charged as long as I was alone and I informed them the dates and where I was staying. They also took my name address and a photo of me. I was a little concerned that they took a photo but they said it was for my own good so they knew who was working in Aberdeen plus if I didnt return home, they would know who they were looking for. They went on about it being immoral but I told them that if it wasnt for us girls that there would be alot more marriages on the rock! Anyway Im adhering to what they have requested but believe they are going to try to change the laws up in Scotland. It was a bit scarey especially since they had a print off of me on the internet too. Just writing this in case anyone going so they know what to look out for and to be careful if you are not working alone as they told me that they had charged some girls the day before who were touring. Marie x"

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For ease of reference:

"Anyone touring Scotland particularly Aberdeen especially if you are not alone, please be careful. Last month when I was in Aberdeen I had reception with two policmen at the door of the apartment. Aparently, these two policemen had been appointed a job into looking into the sex industry in Aberdeen. They asked if they could come in - was a bit embarrassed as was with a guy! Anyway, they said I wasnt doing anything wrong but if I had been with another girl, they would have arrested me as working as a brothel. They took the guy that was with me's name and address. He rang me later that afternoon and told me this and that he was a little afraid as he was married.

The police told me that I had to move so I sent them to pay my bill and they gave me a lift. They said I could go back to Aberdeen and not be charged as long as I was alone and I informed them the dates and where I was staying. They also took my name address and a photo of me. I was a little concerned that they took a photo but they said it was for my own good so they knew who was working in Aberdeen plus if I didnt return home, they would know who they were looking for. They went on about it being immoral but I told them that if it wasnt for us girls that there would be alot more marriages on the rock! Anyway Im adhering to what they have requested but believe they are going to try to change the laws up in Scotland. It was a bit scarey especially since they had a print off of me on the internet too. Just writing this in case anyone going so they know what to look out for and to be careful if you are not working alone as they told me that they had charged some girls the day before who were touring. Marie x"

Thanks Laura. I find this quite worrying. Apart from the obvious civil liberties aspects, the last thing we want is Aberdeen to become a no-go zone for touring escorts.

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The behaviour and attitude of the police do not suggest any sinister motive to me. More likely to be a combined survey and welfare visit. These visits would provide strong signals if any abuse or exploitation were occurring which could then be forcefully investigated later. So .... probably not harassment, just sensible policing.

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The behaviour and attitude of the police do not suggest any sinister motive to me. More likely to be a combined survey and welfare visit. These visits would provide strong signals if any abuse or exploitation were occurring which could then be forcefully investigated later. So .... probably not harassment, just sensible policing.

WG's usually tend to be pretty good judges of character, and if the ones concerned in these cases felt the attitude of the cops was intimidating then I think it is a real concern. After all, it looks as if they're trawling the esocrt listing sites to find who's touring. Even so-called 'welfare visits' are likely to make a lot of ladies think twice about risking the hassle of coming here.

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The behaviour and attitude of the police do not suggest any sinister motive to me. More likely to be a combined survey and welfare visit. These visits would provide strong signals if any abuse or exploitation were occurring which could then be forcefully investigated later. So .... probably not harassment, just sensible policing.

In both cases the girls were asked to leave, i.e. moved on and put out of business. They may have not been arrested as they are not doing anything illigal so the police would have a hard time arresting them but its hardly sensible policing. Its the police using thier powers to put girls out of business and run them out of town, what not sinister about that?

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WG's usually tend to be pretty good judges of character, and if the ones concerned in these cases felt the attitude of the cops was intimidating then I think it is a real concern. After all, it looks as if they're trawling the esocrt listing sites to find who's touring. Even so-called 'welfare visits' are likely to make a lot of ladies think twice about risking the hassle of coming here.

I don't think that there was any concern about the attitude of the police. There was concern and suspicion about being photographed, giving personal details and giving details about future visits to the area. However, these requests would be consistent with a combined survey/welfare visit. BUT, if the WGs were to receive further visits from the police in the future without good reason, this would amount to harassment. Complaints should then be made to the highest levels.

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What I find amazing and I say it knowing nothing and I really do mean nothing about the area is how the police could be so well informed on the movements of a few legally touring escorts yet presumably you must have brothels up there which opperate on the wrong side of the law?

Why go after independents who will be in the area for a few days at most yet illegal brothels still exist in the area? Are we sure these actions were not as a result of a compliant from a neighbouring or another guest and infact the girl had been rumbled through activity rather than malice?

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What I find amazing and I say it knowing nothing and I really do mean nothing about the area is how the police could be so well informed on the movements of a few legally touring escorts yet presumably you must have brothels up there which opperate on the wrong side of the law?

Why go after independents who will be in the area for a few days at most yet illegal brothels still exist in the area? Are we sure these actions were not as a result of a compliant from a neighbouring or another guest and infact the girl had been rumbled through activity rather than malice?

Parlours are not tolerated at all in Aberdeen. If I remember correctly the last one that opened was closed within days.

It has been mentioned that the police mentioned they're lifting tour details from A W and Escort Scotland - if an escort has her face pics it doesn't take long for her to be tracked down. Plus, if she mentions area that the apartments or hotel are situated it will make it even easier to find them.

One girl hadn't even started her tour and she was asked to vacate the premises, so nothing to do with complaints from neighbours.

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What I find amazing and I say it knowing nothing and I really do mean nothing about the area is how the police could be so well informed on the movements of a few legally touring escorts yet presumably you must have brothels up there which opperate on the wrong side of the law?

Why go after independents who will be in the area for a few days at most yet illegal brothels still exist in the area? Are we sure these actions were not as a result of a compliant from a neighbouring or another guest and infact the girl had been rumbled through activity rather than malice?

I'm sure there must be local brothels, but I haven't read about them in our sensationalist local press. Quite a lot of apartment-based local independents, and street girls working the port area a few minutes stroll from police HQ.

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So what's the motive?

A presbyterian notion of morality or good old Aberdonian protectionism - just thinking of how long the local chippies and takeaways managed keep Macdonalds out of town

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The behaviour and attitude of the police do not suggest any sinister motive to me. More likely to be a combined survey and welfare visit. These visits would provide strong signals if any abuse or exploitation were occurring which could then be forcefully investigated later. So .... probably not harassment, just sensible policing.

Your profile doesn't indicate which side of the line you come from!

To me, the police have no business having or obtaining ANY information about me, unless I am involved in crime. I refuse to answer the TV licencing set up's intimidating letters about empty houses - they only need to know who lives at TV receiving houses, not those with no TV!

To take mug-shots, and obtain personal details of people who have committed no crime, so that if their bodies are found floating in the harbour in future, they can be quickly identified, is NOT a police function.

So they want to be advised in advance of WGs tour arrangements, so that they can lie in wait, and get the personal details of clients (if stopped on the street, for no reason ["Just a routine check, Sir!"] in Scotland, you must give name and address, I am informed) and tell them that although what they are doing isn't illegal, but it is immoral, do they?

This is not just an attack on a few WGs - it is an attack on the civil liberties of all of us - every bloody one of us, men, women and children (and, if you must, LGBT as well!).

Have I got the guts to stand up at an election meeting and ask candidates what, if anything, they think should be done about the selling sex by free people?

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In both cases the girls were asked to leave, i.e. moved on and put out of business. They may have not been arrested as they are not doing anything illigal so the police would have a hard time arresting them but its hardly sensible policing. Its the police using thier powers to put girls out of business and run them out of town, what not sinister about that?

But the police did say that they could return in the future, albeit asking, but not demanding, that they be kept in the picture. Also, presumably, the hotel and apartment owners would have requested the police to move the WGs from their properties once they were formally aware of the situation. This would have been an unfortunate consequence of the police visit. However, if you had been tasked with having to survey the numbers and welfare of independents in your locality, could you suggest any other way that this could be achieved?

So for me the jury is still out until such time as any of the WGs returns to the area and reports back, or if any of the girls indicates to the police beforehand the name of a new hotel where she will be staying and is then asked to vacate the accommadation beforehand.

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Also, presumably, the hotel and apartment owners would have requested the police to move the WGs from their properties once they were formally aware of the situation.

Why would a Hotel owner request the Police to move a person who has committed no crime?

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Why would a Hotel owner request the Police to move a person who has committed no crime?

Exactly. Every hotel manager I have ever come accross is fine with escorts working in them as long as they remain discrete. As is the case for many landlords escorts make great tenants, they pay on time and rarely cause problems. Unless the girl is working in a small B&B which would immediately draw attention to her most wouldnt have a problem with it, in larger hotels an escort working is probably the least of thier worries compared to rowdy tourists after a night out on the town, especially if your talking about New Year in scotland :-P

If the hotel officially asks the girl to leave when she has commited no crime they would also be required to refund her for her stay and as such they could loose revenue.

Police may say the girls can return but they also want to know when they plan to return and where they will be staying, enough to put most escorts off a return visit

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presumably you must have brothels up there which opperate on the wrong side of the law?

Melanie is right. There were 2 that opened around the same time. Both closed down pretty swiftly, and the owners/operators charged. IIRC, they were convicted as well.

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Why would a Hotel owner request the Police to move a person who has committed no crime?

Perhaps for the same reason that the hotel owners that were mentioned in the first post, had, whatever that may be:

"They then assisted me as I packed my stuff (hotel management had asked them to ask me to leave)"

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