LONDON: Scotland Yard has in an undercover operation foiled the plans of a sex trafficking gang to sell the virginity of underage girls to wealthy businessmen for up to £150,000 each.
Three women and a man were caught and arrested for offering girls as young as 13 after staff at a luxury hotel tipped off the police.
The incident came to light when one of the women arrived at the Jumeirah Carlton Hotel in Knightsbridge, central London, to offer the gang's services in a handwritten letter to the owner in August last year. "I have 12 girls ready from the age 14-20 years, who are living all over the UK, I have spent money on the preparation of this event such as a rented house for the girls and also all expenses needed," the Daily Mail quoted the letter as reading.
Staff immediately alerted police, who traced the car the woman came in and the telephone number given in the letter to an address in Wigan, where Fatima Hagnegat, 24, and her husband, Rassoul Gholampour lived.
Detectives then exchanged messages with the gang under the guise of potential clients. An officer, named Cameron, spoke to Hagnegat's aunt, Marohkh Jamali, 41, and she told him that she could arrange a party for four to five people that night if required.
She also stated that she could provide girls from Iran, England and Eastern Europe aged 14 and 20. The officer arranged to meet Jamali who told him some of her girls were virgins and could be "broken" by his client.
She emailed him photographs of a number of girls and said she would bring up to five girls to London, including two 13-year-olds, and would expect £50,000 to 150,000 for each. Jamali and Hagnegat were arrested from the hotel and the victims, who had all been brought to London were taken to a victims' centre.