Sleepy British seaside town plagued by pop-up brothels

Police discovered 14 brothels in Newquay in six months

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Sleepy seaside town plagued by pop-up brothels

A sleepy British seaside town has been plagued by pop-up brothels after pimps started using holiday lets as sex dens.

Police discovered fourteen brothels in just six months operating in Newquay in Cornwall.

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Pimps and prostitutes often from Eastern Europe are reportedly evading the authorities by booking seemingly-innocent getaways for just a week.

They then flee before capture - but not before turning the accommodation into temporary brothels.

Police say the problem has been growing in the resort - a popular party town known for its stag and hen dos.

Credits: Getty Images

Getty Images

The issue was first exposed at the resort in July after neighbours saw suspicious-looking men coming and going at all hours from a red-bricked suburban house.

And 14 pop-up brothels have been discovered in Newquay in just six months by police since.

Officers are now working on a crackdown and say the women working could be victims of human slavery and sex trafficking.

But police are warning that it is not isolated to the seaside town and pop-up brothels are likely to be operating across Cornwall.

Inspector Dave Meredith said: "I don't think this issue is isolated to Newquay alone, it is almost certainly force wide and country wide.

"We do have concerns for the women working in these brothels, we have a very much victim-centred approach, we are concerned about their vulnerability and that they could be victims of human slavery and sex trafficking.

"What it means basically is that the sex workers move quite quickly, they usually operate these brothels for about a week before moving on.

"They book the accommodation online and the accommodation is usually holiday lets or apartments where the owner is elsewhere and doesn't know what is going on, although sometimes they do use hotels.

"They book the accommodation online so the owner gets the money electronically transferred to their account without knowing anything, they move in, operate for around a week at the most, sometimes less, then move out onto somewhere else.

Credits: Getty

Getty

"Because it is so rapid it is hard to keep up with.

"The evidence that we have at the moment indicates that the majority in Newquay are coming from eastern Europe.

"We've got a victim-centred approach, although it is an offence to operate a brothel.

"We do understand that a lot of the women that operate from the pop up brothels are vulnerable, and instead of arresting them, which is perhaps what police would have done decades ago, we try to signpost them to agencies that can help them, and try to help them ourselves to see if they are victims of sex crime or acting under duress.

"The main thing for us is to treat them as victims and to also try and find out if there are organised crime behinds the sex workers who are exploiting them."

"If you live near holidays lets or flats, be mindful of men coming to the premises at all hours, sex workers who may come and go quite quickly, and if you have any concerns please contact the police on 101."