Police in Ukraine humiliated sex workers during a grim PR stunt when they decided to film them getting arrested.
The operation was carried out over the weekend, when officers raided 22 properties, including nine suspected sex salons, in the Ukrainian capital city of Kiev.
Police filmed the raids so they could use the footage as part of an anti-prostitution PR campaign, however shocking scenes show young women, some of whom appear to be crying, forced to lie down or stand in their underwear in front of the camera.
You can watch the police raid here:
The women attempted to hide their faces when possible, though one image shows a group of women, one of whom is wearing lingerie and high heels, lined up against the wall and looking at the camera.
The operation resulted in the arrest of 50 suspected sex workers, as well as eight people who police described as being involved in the administration of running the brothels.
Officers also arrested six people who were responsible for liaising with potential clients via online contact and telephone calls, as well as young women recruited by a man named ‘Timur’ who is said to have managed the women.
Following the arrests, police in the Kiev region released the footage of the raids, though it’s not clear to what extent they identified those involved.
A spokesperson for the police spoke about those who were caught, saying:
The organiser of the network was a woman who went by the name of Renata.
The network included people who received calls from clients, administrators, managers in the brothels where the women worked and even taxi drivers responsible for delivering the girls to clients who wanted a personal visit.
The spokesperson said, aside from the women involved, the alleged criminal organisation included around 20 people, though not all of them have been arrested yet.
Footage shows the police searching through handbags and cupboards during their raids. They can be seen finding cash during the process, though officials have not revealed how much money was obtained.
In the wake of the operation, employees of the Office for Combating Crimes Related to Trafficking, together with employees of the Main Investigative Department of the NPU under the procedural leadership of the Prosecutor General’s Office, are investigating criminal proceedings regarding ‘pimping or involving a person in prostitution’.
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Emily Brown first began delivering important news stories aged just 13, when she launched her career with a paper round. She graduated with a BA Hons in English Language in the Media from Lancaster University, and went on to become a freelance writer and blogger. Emily contributed to The Sunday Times Travel Magazine and Student Problems before becoming a journalist at UNILAD, where she works on breaking news as well as longer form features.