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Woman from Turkmenistan held for running sex racket in Pune

'Pimp' also arrested after cops send person posing as customer to Kothrud flat; flesh trade mastermind absconding

The involvement of women from foreign countries in the flesh trade has once again come to the fore after the arrest of a 30-year-old from Turkmenistan from a middle-class locality in Kothrud. The police said the arrested person, who came here on a tourist visa, and an accomplice were running a sex racket in a flat in a residential society.




Two in the net: The woman from Turkmenistan and Kunal Kumbale
(both circled). PICs/Krunal Gosavi


The arrested woman had arrived in Delhi about five months ago. The police said they also arrested a pimp after they sent a decoy customer to the flat in Madhukunj Society in Kothrud. The action was taken by the Social Security Cell on Monday evening. The police identified the arrested pimp as Sachin alias Kunal Baburao Kumbale (24) of Chandannagar.

Police custody
Both the woman and Kumbale were produced in the court of Judicial Magistrate (First Class) S S Bose and remanded in police custody for two days. Sources said the discovery of the sex racket was just the tip of the iceberg and there could be hundreds of call girls from foreign countries active in the city and Mumbai after coming to the country on three-month tourist visas. Police sources said these women often claimed they were here to try their luck in Bollywood films but ended up working as call girls in metro cities.According to the sources, Kumbale is an external BCom student and was earlier employed by the mastermind of the busted sex racket. They said the accused mastermind was a person named John alias Jatin Chhabra, who was on the run.

Senior Police Inspector Bhanupratap Barge, in-charge of the Social Security Cell of the Crime Branch, said, "They were running a racket involving foreign nationals at Flat No. 501 of Madhukunj Society Phase-2 in Kothurd by placing advertisements for hi-fi escort services in newspapers." According to sources, the decoy customer was asked to come to several locations by Kumbale before he was finally taken to a flat in Kothrud, where foreigner woman was staying.

In the past
In 2008, similar action was taken against two Russian women by the Social Security Cell. The two had also come to the country on tourist visas and were found engaged in prostitution-related activities. Assistant Police Inspector Vimal Bidwe lodged a complaint against both the accused under relevant sections of the Prevention of Immoral Trafficking Act with Kothrud police station. The police seized Rs 12,000 and two mobile phones from them.

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