Palace orders PNP: Probe Chinese-run sex trade
Christina Mendez (The Philippine Star) - January 29, 2020 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — On messaging app WeChat, the girls are referred to as “new tea” or “fast food.” Chinese clients pay the girls for sex in hotel rooms rented by Chinese pimps.

These were some of the revelations as the Senate launched an inquiry yesterday into the alleged Chinese-run sex trade.

Malacañang yesterday ordered the Philippine National Police (PNP) to look into reports of prostitution rings catering to Chinese employees of Philippine offshore gaming operators (POGOs) and other foreign workers.

“We will have it investigated. If it is true then we have to do something about it,” presidential spokesman Salvador Panelo told reporters.

Sen. Risa Hontiveros, who chairs the committee on women, children, family relations and gender equality, said some of the girls are pimped on the messaging app WeChat using codes such as “new tea” for girls and “fast food” for quickie sex.

“These Chinese sex dens pose a security threat to women,” Hontiveros said.

The proliferation of Chinese-run prostitution dens is one of the consequences of the rise of POGOs in the country, law enforcement officials told senators.

National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) deputy director for special investigation service Vicente de Guzman III said prostitution dens that cater only to Chinese customers have increased.

‘Hotels used as sex dens’

Authorities are also monitoring hotels in Makati that are allegedly being used to host sex workers and their Chinese patrons, according to Maj. Gideon Ines, deputy chief of the city police.

Ines said the surveillance covers up to 10 hotels where Chinese pimps rent rooms.

He said based on their profiling, POGO employees were the clients of prostitution dens they have raided in the city in recent months.

Ines said the modus operandi is that the suspected sex trafficker, usually a Chinese citizen, books several rooms or an entire floor of a hotel for several months or a year, and uses those same rooms as sex dens.

The Makati police and the NBI have raided several hotels and establishments where they rescued over 150 Chinese and Filipino women, some of whom were minors.

Some of the rescued Chinese women were released to their “relatives.” The others remain in the custody of the Department of Social Welfare and Development or with private shelters such as The Haven in Alabang and Voice of the Free.

During the hearing, a 15-year-old girl testified about her ordeal in a Chinese prostitution den before she was rescued by police during a raid in Makati.

She said she serviced Chinese patrons and was paid at least P6,000 per job. – With Paolo Romero

SEX TRADE
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