53 detained across Turkey in huge anti-prostitution operation
SAMSUNSecurity forces on May 12 conducted a major operation targeting administrators and members of escort websites in 13 provinces across Turkey, detaining a total of 53 suspects, Doğan News Agency has reported.
Earlier, detention warrants for a total of 731 suspects had been issued for allegedly being member of the escort website and engaged in prostitution.
In the operations based in Adana and Samsun provinces, authorities spotted 30 escort websites operating through the web as well as 41 administrators.
Some 53 targets, including administrators and 16 women, were detained on charges of “forming an organization to commit crime” and “organized prostitution” during raids dubbed “Last Door,” joined by 1,781 police officers on addresses in Konya, Bursa, Eskişehir, Gaziantep, Kocaeli, Muğla, Hatay, Mersin, Adana, İzmir, Istanbul and Ankara.
Another four suspects who had been managing the organization and 674 women have still been sought by police.
Police also confiscated six vehicles, five flats worth 2.75 million liras and accounts in 25 different banks belonging to the suspects. The account summary of the suspects had reportedly amounted 3.44 million liras.
According to the report, a total of 668 women had been subscribed to the escort websites and paid 400 liras for the subscription. Some of the administrators also reportedly included information technologies experts while one of the women’s annual income was 200,000 liras and the administrator’s was 750,000 liras.
According to state-run Anadolu Agency, website administrators had previously collected 2.79 million liras in membership fees.
Two of the alleged administrators, identified only by their initials as Ö.A. and Ö.A., opened weekly and monthly subscription options for the women and also offered “gold membership” to those who wanted to appear at the top of the website.
Under Turkish law prostitution is legal, but only in tightly regulated state-supervised brothels.