Traffickers jailed for total of 20 years for running brothel network
Four members of an organised crime network have been sentenced to a total of 20 years for running a string of brothels in and around London.
The four, along with others not before the court, placed women who had been trafficked to the UK from Romania into one of a network of properties they controlled in order to profit from their activities as prostitutes.
The three men and one woman were sentenced today [25 May 2018] after they were found guilty on Wednesday of involvement in the network which sexually exploited the women over a four year period after a trial at Wood Green Crown Court.
The gang controlled premises in Colindale, Stanmore, Golders Green, Ealing, Park Royal, Barnet, Hendon and Watford. Police raided four of these properties on 19 September 2017. Around 12 women gave evidence during the trial. They each paid a large cut of their profits to the gang for the privilege of using the brothels in and around London.
Money made by prostitution was then sent home to a ringleader in Romania – currently being prosecuted separately by Romanian authorities. Financial records revealed that more than £500,000 of transfers were made in connection with this criminal enterprise.
Georgian Marinescu, 25 [DOB: 23/07/1992] rented properties, collected women from airport after paying for their flights, and he made payments to adult websites. He was jailed for a total of nine years.
Georgiana Marcovici, 31 [DOB: 17/03/1987] paid rent for properties, uploaded profiles to sexual services websites, made appointments for the women as well as driving them between brothels. She also transferred large quantities of cash back to ringleaders in Romania. She was jailed for a total of three years.
Stefanita Miron, 24 [12/01/1994] was responsible for creating and updating the profiles on adult websites which were used by the gang to sell sex. He transferred cash from the brothels back to Romania. He was jailed for a total of three years.
Mihai Marin, 23 [DOB: 04/09/1994] encouraged his girlfriend into prostitution from Romania, took photos of the women for their website profiles. He was the registered keeper of the group’s car. He was jailed for a total of five years.
A joint international investigation team, assisted by Eurojust, helped with the prosecution.
Lynette Woodrow, of the CPS, said: “Each of these defendants played an important role in this large-scale and lucrative criminal enterprise.
“The tasks necessary to run such a franchise included recruiting sex workers, arranging for their flights to the UK, managing and renting properties, creating profiles on online sexual services websites, and transferring large sums of money back to a ringleader in Romania. Each week the gang moved the women from property to property in order to maximise their profits.
“This successful prosecution, which involved a significant amount of international cooperation by a joint UK and Romanian investigation team, shows that anyone who aims to illegally make money in this way, will face prosecution for their crimes."
Notes to editors
Lynette Woodrow is the Deputy Chief Crown Prosecutor with responsibility for the London CPS Complex Casework Unit
1/ Conspiracy to traffic persons into the UK for the purposes of sexual exploitation between 1 Jan 2013 and 19 Sep 2017 (Marinescu only)
2/ Conspiracy to traffic persons within the UK for the purposes of sexual exploitation between 1 Jan 2013 and 19 Sep 2017 (Marinescu and Marcovici)
3/ Conspiracy to control prostitution for gain between 1 Jan 2013 and 19 Sep 2017 (Marinescu, Marcovici, Marin and Miron)
4/ Conspiracy to transfer criminal property between 1 Jan 2013 and 19 Sep 2017 (Marinescu, Marcovici, Marin and Miron).