The city police claimed have busted a high profile sex racket that operated at a plush spa located in Viman Nagar, Avenue II on Thursday. They have rescued four Thai nationals from being forced into flesh trade.
According to the police, the racket was being run allegedly by a person identified as Bantikumar Kantibhai Patel, 27, a resident of Meera Nagar Society, Koregaon Park and a 24-year-old woman from Nagaland who stays in Kondhwa.
Police who conducted the raid said that the accused persons have been running the spa called Le Victoria Spa and Salon Centre at House number 18, Gulmohar Society, which is a part of a busy commercial area. According to the officials, the suspects had allegedly brought the Thai women to Pune, under the pretext of employing them as masseuses and trafficked them into flesh trade instead. The victims were in the age group between 31 and 41. The women were brought into the city on a tourist visa on the promise of employing them in a job where they could get at least Rs 50,000 a month.
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Dilip Shinde, the senior police inspector said “Three of the rescued Thai women were residing at Clover Park in whereas one was staying at Adarsh Nagar. They have been shifted to a rescue home soon after the raid. Mobile phone and cash worth Rs 6000 was seized during the raid . The accused used to operate the business through online portals and the ‘clients’, mostly working professionals, were managed by communicating through mobile-based applications.
The two accused were booked under Indian Penal Code (IPC) sections 370 for trafficking the woman for the purpose of sexual exploitation and 370 A for exploiting the trafficked person. Apart from this Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act and was also evoked. The police will inform the Foreign Regional Office (FRO) about the rescue for further proceeding into the case.
Police officials had rescued atleast 40 Thai women from massage parlours across the city , particularly in areas like Chatushrungi, Baner, Sinhagad Road, and Sanghvi during the last six months.