St Albans woman fined over Bricket Wood brothel
A ST Albans brothel keeper has been ordered to pay nearly �68,000 as a result of benefiting financially from the business in Bricket Wood.
Rita Solanki, aged 40, of Lattimore Road, St Albans, was sentenced at Luton Crown Court in March this year for managing a brothel and money laundering offences. She had pleaded guilty and was given nine months imprisonment.
On Friday (November 4) the case was back at Luton Crown Court for a confiscation hearing.
The brothel was run from a flat on Old Watford Road in Bricket Wood, where workers were based and would pay Solanki a cut of their earnings.
Police officers executed warrants at Solanki’s home address and the rented flat during September 2009 where they found evidence relating to the running of a brothel.
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Det Inspector Ian Butler, from Hertfordshire Constabulary’s Economic Crime Unit, said: “This is a positive result and testament to the hard work of officers involved both in the criminal and financial investigations.
“It sends a strong message to criminals that crime does not pay as we will take your criminal cash as well as prosecute you for your crimes.”
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The confiscation order was made under the Proceeds of Crime Act which DI Butler described as: “a really positive piece of legislation which empowers police to hit criminals in the pocket once they have received their criminal conviction.”
He added: “Organised prostitution of this kind, where other women are recruited and organisers of the brothel exploit them by taking a cut of the money, is a heinous and appalling crime.
“Very often those involved in running the brothel or reaping the benefits are making money from others’ misery – preying on vulnerable people in society who are desperate to earn money and, in some cases, coercing them into prostitution.
“It also creates issues of anti-social behaviour and community tensions for neighbours whose lives are blighted in the areas where the brothels are based.
He urged anyone who knew someone running organised prostitution or who thought they might be and benefiting from it to call the Economic Crime Unit via police non-emergency number 101. Alternatively, you can call independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.