Cross Border CrimeNews

The Spanish National Police dismantles a criminal group that sexually exploited women in Qatar, the Netherlands and Australia

National Police agents have arrested five people in the province of Barcelona and have dismantled a criminal group allegedly dedicated to the sexual exploitation of women in Qatar, the Netherlands and Australia. The victims were recruited through social networks where job offers were published with very beneficial conditions in the field of luxury prostitution that ultimately turned out to be, to a large extent, false. Several of the exploited women came to suffer sexual assaults and robberies by clients.

The police investigation began thanks to a complaint received in the email, one of the tools, together with the telephone line 900 10 50 90, which the National Police Plan against Human Trafficking has. for Sexual Exploitation Purposes to facilitate citizen collaboration and anonymous and confidential reporting of this type of crime.

As a result of the information received, and after numerous inquiries, the agents were able to verify the existence of a criminal organization, based in the province of Barcelona and in Amsterdam (Netherlands), which was dedicated to recruiting women and transferring them to places like Doha (Qatar), Amsterdam, Australia, or Spanish cities like Ibiza, to offer their sexual services.

Victims traveling outside of Spain were instructed to cross the borders pretending to be tourists, and were even enrolled in training courses so that they could access with a student visa. Previously, they gave the organization a photographic album so that they could publish their images on different web pages dedicated to the offer of sexual services.

During the recruitment, the criminal network promised the women very advantageous economic and personal conditions that ultimately did not correspond to those offered. Thus, they were subjected to strict physical control, they were forced to be available 24 hours a day and they were controlled through video surveillance cameras in brothels, even being financially sanctioned if said cameras were disconnected.

Sexual assaults and robberies

In the Qatari city of Doha, the victims were housed in tourist apartments reserved by the organization and received only 50% of the agreed money. Several of them were sexually assaulted and robbed by some clients, leaving them completely helpless in the country that they managed to leave thanks to the help of friends or relatives.

On the other hand, the women sent to Amsterdam were controlled by a member of the organization located in that city, who was in charge of picking them up at the airport, taking them to the brothel where they had to provide sexual services, periodically collecting the benefit obtained and even threaten them if they consider leaving the house.

The police operation has ended with the entry and search of two homes in the province of Barcelona where abundant documentation related to the crimes investigated has been seized, accounting books for the services provided by the victims, fraudulent documentation used by members of the organization, telephone books, various computer equipment and 85 grams of hashish.