Two foreign women arrested in an undercover prostitution sting in Larnaca are facing charges of illegal gains while also being charged with violating immigration rules.
According to local media, a Russia woman aged 34 and a 32-year-old woman from Kazakhstan, were arrested by Larnaca police on prostitution-related charges following a two-month undercover operation. The arrest took place on Tuesday around noon.
Police received information on possible suspicious activities in connection with an ad on a website that offered erotic relaxing massage
Reports said police received information about possible suspicious activities in connection with an ad on a website that offered erotic relaxing massage. The two women appeared in two separate ads under the category sensual massage for persons over 18 years old, where a customer could pay €50 for the services of one woman or €100 for two women at the same.
Investigators immediately set an operation for discreet surveillance outside the women’s building downtown, where they observed various men going in and coming out half an hour later at different times.
Police associates, who were undercover cops, were said to have visited the apartment in question during the surveillance period which lasted two months according to media reports.
Undercover police reportedly used marked bills in order to collect evidence in the suspicion of criminal activity, including in two instances when two different officers went to the apartment at different times and paid €50 each to have sex with the women.
Undercover cop went back a second time
But according to daily Politis, one of the police associates went back a second time and paid €100 to have sex with both women who were being suspected of criminal activity. The undercover cop was said to have used two €50 notes given to him by police in order to pay for the services of the two women.
Shortly after the visit ended, the two-month undercover operation was concluded with police barging in and arresting the two women on charges of living on the earnings of prostitution.
Police also confiscated a number of items associated with sex and prostitution activities, such as used condoms, sex toys, and notebooks.
Local reports said the two women, who were later found to be in violation of immigration rules, were remanded for two days.
Police had initially told Knews the arrest of the two women dated back to an older case, while they could not confirm that an undercover operation took place earlier this week. But after a case was filed in Larnaca District Court, they clarified in a follow-up communication that "no male associates were involved this week" while confirming the arrest did take place on Tuesday at 12:30pm.
The two women are being held without bail until their arraignment hearing, which has been scheduled for September 23.
The sex industry in the Republic of Cyprus is unregulated. While prostitution is not illegal, running a brothel is an offence punishable by law, along with trafficking and pimping activities.
Story has been updated based on additional information provided by police