A suspected prostitution recruiter from Ukraine is awaiting trial in the Republic of Cyprus following his arrest on Monday at Larnaca International Airport.
According to police, a 31-year-old man from Ukraine was detained Monday at Larnaca airport during passport inspection, after immigration officers determined he was wanted by authorities in his country for prostitution-related offenses.
The suspect is said to be wanted by Ukrainian law enforcement authorities in connection with the repeated recruitment of persons for the purpose of prostitution, which is illegal in that country.
Police said the suspect appeared in a Larnaca district court on Tuesday with a judge ordering him to remain in custody until extradition hearings begin on July 30.
It was not clear whether the suspect was being accused of directly recruiting women into prostitution or being involved in facilitating recruitment activities in a prostitution ring
It was not clear whether the suspect was being accused of directly recruiting women into prostitution or being involved in facilitating recruitment activities in a prostitution ring.
Police did not say whether the suspect was also facing charges on the island but an official statement said Larnaca CID was conducting an investigation.
While there is no official extradition agreement between Ukraine and Cyprus, the two countries maintain bilateral agreements on cooperation in combating crime that includes extradition provisions.
The Republic of Cyprus and other countries have been a destination for women recruited in Ukraine for the purpose of prostitution, with reports saying females from poor regions were more likely to fall victims of labor exploitation and human trafficking.
While prostitution in Ukraine is illegal, both countries prohibit the establishment and operation of brothels while pimping activities are also punishable by law.
But while prostitution is legal in the Republic of Cyprus, it is also unregulated, meaning that sex workers legally allowed to make a living by prostituting themselves could end up being victimized by pimps.