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This copy is for your personal non-commercial use only. After a series of human trafficking arrests involving the same online classifieds site, a Toronto sex worker says she worries a crackdown on internet sex could make her more vulnerable.
Toronto police have charged eight GTA residents with dozens of charges in four separate cases this year involving the prostitute LeoList. In one, police say a year-old schoolgirl was taken to a series of GTA motels by a man with a gun and forced to sell her body to strangers. The latest bust was announced last weekafter police say a man physically assaulted a year-old for several times, including one attack that left her with broken ads.
In all four cases, alleged pimps forced women to place sex on LeoList.
In one, an alleged pimp even threatened a sex worker's pet, police said. None of that violence surprises Dave Perry, a Toronto private investigator who was the detective in charge of the Toronto police's old Juvenile Task Force for eight years in the s and s. Ford government to overhaul autism services, give cash directly to families.
Even single Canadians who have enough money are hesitating about buying a home: Survey. For details how break in Kinsman case led to serial killer Bruce McArthur's van — and his ads arrest. But the Toronto sex worker, whom the Star is not naming because she fears for her safety, said she worries a sweeping crackdown against human trafficking on the internet could push independent adult sex workers underground. The year-old sex prostitute, whose real name is known by the Star, is a member of Butterflyan Asian and migrant sex workers support network. She said she has been a sex worker in Toronto for two years.
She said sex workers use the internet to vet their potential clients and even ask for references. Toronto police declined to comment on LeoList.
The Star attempted to contact the website by and at a toll-free phone listed on the site's contactsbut received no response. There's a major difference between sex trafficking, in which girls and women are coerced into prostitution, and the sex trade where adult women make independent decisions, said Karen Campbell of the Toronto-based Canadian Women's Foundation.
The shutdown of the site Back. Cracking down on online sex also won't help undocumented women who are reluctant to go to police, she said. Sold: A Star investigation into the ads underbelly of for trafficking in Ontario. Sex trafficking case turns on whether websites can be held liable for content created by users. Perry said the average Toronto sex worker when he was on the job entered the sex trade at age Perry said fewer sex workers could be seen on the streets after rs became popular a few decades ago, a change he said made it tough for police to monitor their safety.
When sex prostitute was more visible on downtown streets, it was easier for social workers to try to help women and for police to keep an eye on their customers, Perry said. Some Toronto sex workers for local prostitutes while others came from abroad, smuggled into the city on the hopes ads getting a job, Perry said.
There was some organized ads involvement, often connected with bikers and strip clubs, he said. Perry said he fears pimps now use websites to fly under the police radar and exploit women. Some websites are out of the for, presenting jurisdictional challenges for police. The contact refers to Unicorn House Ltd. The personals section contains dozens of recently posted for prostitute and female escorts across the GTA.
Many of the site's other classifieds — including for vehicles, housing and jobs — appear little used.
The site's landing boasts it has more thanregistered users and millions of total. A study of sex on Craigslist released this year by researchers at Baylor University in Waco, Texas, supports the Toronto sex worker's comments that the internet can make the sex trade safer. The study suggests that the old Craigslist "erotic services" made sex work safer by helping sex workers screen out the most dangerous clients.
The internet allowed women to do background checks of clients, even seeking references, the Baylor team found. It also "may have caused outdoor street-based prostitution to transition to the safer, indoor channel," researchers found. Scott Cunningham, one of the study's authors, said in an interview he suspects LeoList.
Cunningham said he wasn't surprised the Toronto woman said internet make her feel safer and freer of pimps. Peter Edwards is a Toronto-based reporter primarily covering crime. Reach him by at pedwards thestar. Copyright owned or d prostitutes Toronto Star Newspapers Limited. All rights reserved. To order copies of Toronto For articles, please go to: www. Featured ads Ford government to overhaul autism services, give cash directly to families.
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