The Gold Coast Bulletin
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AT $240 an hour, these Korean sex workers could have worked off their fines before dinner yesterday, after appearing in a Southport court for illegal prostitution.
Xu Jin, 25, Hwo Kim-Rye, 32, and Park Ann-Soon, 31, were paid more than $2000 a day as illegal sex workers by a Surfers Paradise syndicate before being busted by undercover police posing as potential clients last Friday.
The detectives, part of the Prostitution Enforcement Taskforce, arranged to meet the women for sex at apartments in the Artique and Q1 high-rise towers after responding to a classified advertisement in The Gold Coast Bulletin on February 9.
The ad identified the sex workers as a 'uni party girl, just 18, Japanese, natural 36D, perfect backside'.
It also promised 'unlimited fun with all fantasies, in/out calls' and had a mobile phone number attached. Yesterday, the women pleaded guilty and were fined $1400 each.
The court was told police had responded to the ad and a woman who called herself 'Jessie' answered offering the detectives sexual services for a cost of $120 for 30 minutes and told the police to meet at Q1.
When they asked for a second sex worker they were directed to Artique.
Later, at Artique, detectives were introduced to a woman who called herself 'Iko' who confirmed the price, and was then arrested.
While they were there, other men turned up expecting sexual favours and told police they had been calling a different phone number.
Xu arrived at Artique soon after to 'check on the welfare' of 'Iko'. She escorted police to another Surfers Paradise unit in Holborrow Close from where police believe the syndicate operated.
During a search they found six mobile phones, 'numerous' newspaper advertisements and note books containing dates, sex workers' names, times of bookings and the amount each sex worker was to be paid.
Bank deposit slips were also found with the total of international transactions exceeding $6000. In the Southport Magistrates Court yesterday the women pleaded guilty to prostitution and possessing tainted property.
The court was told Hwo had been working as a prostitute on the Gold Coast since October last year and had established the syndicate.
A fourth woman, Han Eun-Young, 29, was also supposed to appear in court yesterday but skipped bail and fled Australia on Sunday.
Police have identified her as the sex worker 'Iko' at Artique.
Xu told police she took the phone calls and had been working in the syndicate for up to three months in exchange for food and free internet.
Park denied being a sex worker, despite police finding 'a large amount' of advertising forms in her bedroom.
Solicitor Melvin Tay told the court the sex workers did not know what they were doing was wrong.
He asked magistrate Gary Finger for leniency and said the women 'pledged they would not do the same thing for a friend again'.
"For all of them it is a first offence," said Mr Tay.
Mr Finger said the women before the court appeared to be the main offenders.
He fined them $1400 each and gave them four months to pay.
"Queensland has laws. You must abide by those laws," said Mr Finger.
"This is your first and only chance, you understand."
Five of the 23 licensed brothels in Queensland are on the Gold Coast.
Under state legislation, a person must make an application to the Prostitution Licensing Authority and pay an annual fee of $18,000 to obtain a brothel licence.
The manager of the business must pay an additional fee which then entitles them to have a maximum of five sex workers.