Kaunas law enforcement officers exposed what is said to be one of the largest prostitution networks in Lithuania in recent years, which was reported yesterday, that is, only almost two months after the arrest of its members in various cities of the country, exposed the entry of Ukrainian women fleeing from the war in their homeland into this increasingly problematic criminal business. The representatives of the non-governmental organization “Combating Human Trafficking and Exploitation Center” (KOPŽI), dealing with this phenomenon in Lithuania, compare its scale to the sex industry.
It should be multiplied by five
The portal kauno.diena.lt managed to additionally find out that thirteen Ukrainians associated with this prostitution network are younger than 30 years old, but – all of them are of legal age and in various family situations – divorced, unmarried, married.
True, some of them came to Lithuania and got into this criminal web in 2021, that is, before the war in Ukraine started. However, unrest there started back in 2014.
However, the vast majority of these women were included in the prostitution business in Lithuania in 2022. And in various ways, and being a foreigner, according to law enforcement officers, it is much more difficult to escape from it, for example, without documents, than for Lithuanians.
According to representatives of KOPŽI, who can tell more than one shocking story of these women, the number “13” officially given by law enforcement officers should be multiplied by another five.
However, this case is also unique in that the law enforcement officers managed to implement the information they received. As already reported, this pre-trial investigation is being conducted by the officers of the Organized Crime Investigation Board of the Kaunas County Chief Police Commissariat, under the guidance of prosecutors from the Organized Crime and Corruption Investigation Department of the Kaunas District Prosecutor’s Office.
Kaunas district VPK photo
A Ukrainian woman is also among the suspects
According to the representatives of KOPŽI, unfortunately, not all the efforts of law enforcement officers to close down the prostitution network that has permeated the country yield the same results as their raids on the so-called “points” of this criminal business.
As already reported, this time sexual services involving Ukrainian women were possibly provided in Kaunas, Vilnius, Šiauliai, Klaipėda, Panevėžys and Marijampole. More precisely, in the rented apartments in the apartment buildings of these cities.
As already reported, two suspects of organizing and leading this prostitution network have also been identified. According to the data of the portal kauno.diena.lt, it is 1989. born Lithuanian, already known to law enforcement from before, and in 1976 Ukrainian born.
Both of them are accused of profiting from another person’s prostitution, for which Lithuanian laws provide up to six years of imprisonment.
Initially, they were both arrested. However, at the moment, only the aforementioned Lithuanian is behind bars, and his possible accomplice, a Ukrainian woman, after a month’s arrest, has been given lighter pretrial measures – 5,000. EUR deposit, a written promise not to leave the current place of residence and intensive supervision.
Kaunas district VPK photo
There are also former policewomen
It is claimed that some of the workers of this prostitution network have already left Lithuania. According to preliminary data, not to the war-torn homeland, but to other foreign countries.
The most common way for them to get into this criminal business is online ads found back in their homeland about a great job offer that does not require knowledge of a foreign language, but will allow you to travel around Europe. And not one, who left her children in the care of relatives in her homeland, decided to make sacrifices for them, thinking that in this way she would be able to ensure their future.
Unfortunately, as it turns out, once you get hooked on this scam, not everything that is offered is so easy and beautiful, and leaving this business also requires a strong character, to say the least.
Among these Ukrainians are former teachers, doctors, IT (information technology) specialists. And in one of the similar cases, which was also started due to profiting from another person’s prostitution – only in another region of Lithuania, there is also a former Ukrainian police officer who got into this criminal web.
Kaunas district VPK photo
Helpline – 24/7
Some of the aforementioned thirteen Ukrainians have been punished by Lithuanian law enforcement officers for becoming prostitutes. And our Code of Administrative Misdemeanors provides for a fine of 90 to 140 euros if you are caught for the first time. And if you get caught repeatedly, that is, the second time in a year, you will be fined from 140 to 300 euros.
True, according to the data of the initiated pre-trial investigation, half an hour of intimate services in this prostitution network cost about 40 euros, and an hour – about 80 euros.
By the way, according to the portal kauno.diena.lt, there are no persons punished for using the services of these women.
And it is naive to expect that after the fines imposed, these Ukrainian women would willingly communicate with law enforcement officers, who gave them only the status of witnesses in this case. None of them were deported from Lithuania. Social, psychological and legal assistance and safe housing services were provided to them by the already mentioned KOPŽI, whose phone number is +370 679 61617. You can contact them for help 24 hours a day.
In addition, in the article of the Lithuanian Code of Administrative Offenses, which stipulates responsibility for prostitution, it is emphasized that persons involved in this criminal business, being materially or otherwise dependent, or using physical or mental coercion or deception, are not subject to administrative responsibility.
Tags: lining publicized case shocking pimps advantage war Ukraine