Three Fulham Women Charged with Trafficking and Prostitution Offences

Women living in upmarket developments suspected of links with Russian mafia

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Women living in two of Fulham's most upmarket developments, Brompton Park Cresent and Imperial Wharf are among five people who have been charged with trafficking and will appear in custody at Westminster Magistrates' Court today, Thursday, 16 May.

The five people charged were:

[A] Tatiana Shmyrova, 44 (21/9/68) of Brompton Park Crescent SW6 was charged with conspiracy to traffic persons into the United Kingdom for sexual exploitation and conspiracy to control prostitution for gain. She was also charged under the Proceeds of Crime Act.

[B] Irina Bespalova, 31 (24/3/82) of Brompton Park Crescent SW6 was charged with conspiracy to control prostitution for gain. She was also charged under the Proceeds of Crime Act.

[C] Michael Poole, 27 (14/11/85) of Hazelwood Lane N13 was charged with conspiracy to control prostitution for gain. He was also charged under the Proceeds of Crime Act.

[E] Natalia Cannon, 33 (10/8/79) of Harbour Reach, The Boulevard, Imperial Wharf was charged with conspiracy to traffic persons into the United Kingdom for sexual exploitation and conspiracy to control prostitution for gain. She was also charged under the Proceeds of Crime Act.

[F] Richard Gorecki, 36 (7/8/76) of Caspian Walk, E16 was charged with conspiracy to control prostitution for gain. He was also charged under the Proceeds of Crime Act.

A 30 year-old woman [D] and a 51 year-old man [G] have been bailed to return pending further enquiries. 

The charges follow arrests on Tuesday following a police investigation which included searches of 13 addresses including Imperial Wharf and Brompton Park Crescent in Fulham's Seagrave Road close to Chelsea's Stamford Bridge ground.

The women, including Tatiana Shmyrova, who is suspected of running a brothel in Brompton Park Crescent are suspected to be part of a gang with links with the Russian mafia.

Police say at around 7am on Tuesday, detectives from the MPS Human Trafficking and Prostitution Unit, assisted by Safer Neighbourhoods and Home Office immigration officers conducted search warrants at 13 addresses.

They included a block of nine flats, reportedly in Warwick Road, believed to have been run as a brothel by the gang. Officers seized around £60,000 cash under the Proceeds of Crime Act and searches are ongoing. 

During the raids, nine East European women, believed to have been forced into prostitution, were rescued and taken to a care centre to receive the support they need.

It is believed the gang convinced women in Eastern Europe that they would be given administrative jobs in the UK. However, once brought into the country they were forced to work as prostitutes at addresses in Kensington and Chelsea. 

This is the first police operation carried out under the European Communities Against Trafficking (ECAT) Project. ECAT is a two-year programme launched in February this year and part-funded by a European Commission grant, which sees the MPS work with councils and charitable organisations to tackle trafficking, assist victims and raise awareness of the issue. 

DI Kevin Hyland of the MPS Human Trafficking and Prostitution Unit, said: "Today we have targeted an organised group of criminals who have been profiting from the abuse of scores of women. 

"This operation is in part a result of victims having the courage to come forward about the abuse they are suffering. I urge other victims of trafficking to phone our hotline where we have translators and specially trained staff awaiting their call. "

Victims of trafficking and prostitution are urged to call the MPS's 24-hour helpline, open seven days a week, on 0800 7832589.

 

May 16, 2013