law enforcers scratching their heads: the rise of Chinese prostitutes catering exclusively to Chinese customers.
An NBI source who took part in one of the raids described the brothels – whose customers, prostitutes, managers and owners are all thought to come from mainland China – to This Week in Asia as a “new development”.
He said the managers were jailed and would be charged with human trafficking, “a non-bailable offence”, and that cases would be filed against the owners, who were not caught “because they are outside the country”.
The Chinese women, whom he described as “young, maybe 18 to 30 years”, were sent to shelters, their passports confiscated and referred to the immigration bureau. The customers were not arrested, but their passport details were also sent to the immigration bureau.
The source said several government agencies had been taking action against Chinese prostitution rings.
He described the brothel his team raided as a “huge” establishment that had a permit to operate as a karaoke bar.
“We didn’t know there was prostitution happening there,” he added, saying a tip-off had been received from Chinese and Filipino informants. “There were concerned Chinese nationals who came to us and told us, ‘you should check this out’,” he said.
LINK TO GAMBLING
The sudden proliferation of Chinese prostitution is tied to the explosive growth of Philippine offshore gaming operators, or Pogos, online gambling companies based in the Philippines that cater to players in China, where gambling is illegal.