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Flat below being used for sex work, what would you do?

(35 Posts)
BoysofMelody Sun 13-Aug-17 02:12:29

The flat below us is owned as a buy to let by and has seemingly had a succession of problem tenants. The landlord who owns it is according to longer term residents,a right dodgy character who's served time for his.part in a money laundering operation.

Anyway, the last but one tenent was a woman from central or Eastern Europe who lived on her own. However it was soon apparent from the stream of male callers at all hours who stayed for no longer than an hour and the accompanying sex noises that she was working in the sex industry. At first I was relatively unconcerned, as it seems she was operating Independently, lived on her own, so wasn't doing anything illegal and I live in a city where the policing of sex work is lax to say the least and the police will turn a a blind eye to sex work so a long as it is kept off the street. There's a number of massage parlours and saunas which are well known as being fronts for brothels.

But in the last few weeks, I've been more concerned. The previous occupant moved without notice and was replaced by another woman of a similar background who is also working in the sex industry. This new woman speaks little English and there have I been a serious of loud and emotional discussions between her and a male.

What really amped up my concern was reading about human trafficking and modern day slavery. I'm now worried that this woman has been trafficked. WIBU to call the police or am I letting my imagination run away with me?

CremeFresh Sun 13-Aug-17 02:14:55

I'd call the police for sure.

duracellred Sun 13-Aug-17 02:16:54

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

Theycalledmethewildrose Sun 13-Aug-17 02:45:12

I'd call the police too. I read there are very few women that do this work voluntarily if there are males/pimps there too. I'm sure dozens of people will come on here to contradict me who probably know a lot more than I do but I would definitely ring the police.

HopeAndJoy16 Sun 13-Aug-17 02:58:36

I think there might be a trafficking hotline number you could call to report it to, but I would definitely call the police too.

Quodlibet Sun 13-Aug-17 03:06:02

Report for sure, but be prepared for having to make a strong case about the threat you believe her to be under.

I had a woman round the corner from me living in a car and turning tricks in a burnt out flat. There were clearly pimps involved who I'd witnessed in the car with her. I reported to social services who tried to fob me off with 'not much we can do, she's an adult making her own choices' 😡😡😡

BoysofMelody Sun 13-Aug-17 10:22:32

Report for sure, but be prepared for having to make a strong case about the threat you believe her to be under

That's the difficulty , I can't be specific all I have is raised voices, no screams or signs of violence.

Iruka Sun 13-Aug-17 10:26:38

You can call The Modern Slavery Foundation on 0800 0121 700 or The Salvation Army on 0300 3038 151 ( they are heavily involved in work against modern slavery)
Or make an anonymous report to crime stoppers on 0800 555 111.

Iruka Sun 13-Aug-17 10:28:05

Oh and don't worry about calling because you aren't sure. They will listen to your concerns and can give advice

BoysofMelody Sun 13-Aug-17 10:53:40

Thanks Iruka!

Donttouchthethings Sun 13-Aug-17 11:05:07

I used to have a job which included a good view of a massage parlour - deliveries included lots of tissues and, of course, the inevitable men coming and going. My boss told the police who came round for a chat. They said they were aware of it and asked us to keep an eye on it too. I think they were easy about it because the girls were OK. For me, that's the bottom line. If you're worried about the woman's welfare I would definitely let the police know.

BoysofMelody Sun 13-Aug-17 13:12:19

Just reported to Crime stoppers

Littlecaf Sun 13-Aug-17 13:14:42


Don't even hestitate.

BoysofMelody Sun 13-Aug-17 13:31:43

Don't even hestitate

What makes me hesitate to contact police directly and on the record rather than an anonymous report to Crimestoppers is that I'm nervous that given the flat below is owned by a criminal, there's a pimp involved, neither of whom would take kindly to their operations being disturbed. I don't fancy out flat getting firebombed or the prospects of reprisals.

I've said that Crimestoppers can contact me for further details if needs be.

Wiifitmama Sun 13-Aug-17 13:41:47

The realty is that even if you report it to the police, there is little they can do. My mum lives in a very wealthy part of central London in a really high end sought after block of flats. There has been a brothel in the basement, and now one next to her flat too. There has been numerous reports to police as well as an active residents association. Residents stand outside and take photos (in full view) of men coming and going. None of this has made any difference, I am sorry to tell you.

PollyFlint Sun 13-Aug-17 13:44:45

The realty is that even if you report it to the police, there is little they can do.

If the woman has been trafficked and is being forced in prostitution against her will, there is plenty they can do.

This isn't about the fact that a flat is being used a brothel. It's about the fact that the OP is worried about the welfare of the woman living there.

LastAnni Sun 13-Aug-17 13:47:31

Duracellred what exactly do you mean by 'probably another immigrant'. OP should call the police because someone foreign is in the flat below hers? Or do you mean only foreigners are prostitutes? Or all prostitutes are foreigners? Really struggling to see the point of your carefully thought out reply.

BoysofMelody Sun 13-Aug-17 13:53:16

This isn't about the fact that a flat is being used a brothel. It's about the fact that the OP is worried about the welfare of the woman living there.

This ^

I have no particular problem of an independent woman was using the flat below for sex work. I do have a problem if there's exploitation and human trafficking going on.

Notreallyarsed Sun 13-Aug-17 13:55:54

Well done OP, hopefully the police can do at least a welfare check on this woman and if she has been trafficked, rescue her.

notevernotnevernotnohow Sun 13-Aug-17 14:02:58

This isn't about the fact that a flat is being used a brothel. It's about the fact that the OP is worried about the welfare of the woman living there
Isn't it (shouldn't it be) both?

Suzcat78 Sun 13-Aug-17 14:07:46

I had this a couple of years ago, I reported it to the council, my local MP and the police. It was a buy to let property where the landlord had no idea what was happening.

They were removed and now someone else lives there.

BoysofMelody Sun 13-Aug-17 14:09:10

Isn't it (shouldn't it be) both?

I as I'd previously believed it was just one woman using her flat on her own to sell sex, it isn't against the law.

DustinGee Sun 13-Aug-17 15:23:20

If there's only one woman living/working there, it is not a brothel.

Prostitution is a perfectly legal occupation in this country. The police would therefore not be interested. (I know you know this OP, but others seem not to).

Of course, if she's being pimped (which is not legal) or working against her will, that's another matter - and you're right, OP, to have alerted CrimeStoppers. If it's felt necessary by the police they can do a welfare check - but one woman working as a prostitute is not, in and of itself, a crime that needs to be dealt with.

Wiifitmama Sun 13-Aug-17 15:27:21

In my Mum's building it is most certainly not single women on their own. They are without doubt being controlled by men and there are multiple women in each flat. At one point, my Mum found two unattended children in the flat next to hers- very very young children. The police did visit and investigate at that point but again, nothing happened.

dotdotdot3 Sun 13-Aug-17 15:29:33

I don't want to be alarmist but the same thing happened to me a few years ago. It ended with the murder of the woman by a punter, a lot of trauma for a lot of people, and a court case

You'd be amazed how many people saw her as some kind of radical sexual outlaw....prior to the murder, of course. If you have any concerns for her safety at all I'd recommend an appropriate intervention. Sooner rather than later.

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