Sex worker busted running illegal business at Gladstone unit
A TASKFORCE detective went undercover as a client to bust a woman operating an unlawful prostitution business from a Gladstone CBD unit complex.
Xiaoyan Luo pleaded guilty in Gladstone Magistrates Court to one count each of engaging in prostitution through an unlawful prostitution business and possessing tainted property.
Court documents sighted by The Observer revealed on October 11 detectives of the Prostitution Enforcement Task Force were "conducting compliance checks" on internet advertisers for prostitution services in the Gladstone area.
Luo's advertisement was found to contain reference to several sexual services offered, breaching the Prostitution Act.
The detective contacted Luo on the number listed with her advertisement and was told to meet at the unit on Oaka Lane.
The detective waited for an hour before Luo arrived in a taxi and approached him.
Luo dangled a key in front of her and indicated the room they were to go to.
Before revealing his identity the detective was able to confirm Luo offered "full service sex" at $230 an hour.
Luo indicated she could not speak English and an interpreter was called in.
The 34-year-old told police she was Chinese and held a working visa.
She consented to a search of her unit and officers found a mobile phone, a silver notebook and $150 cash.
The court heard the notebook appeared to contain details of previous transactions.
The interpreter told officers Luo said: "I have made a mistake and I'm willing to pay the fine, how much is the fine?"
Luo told police she knew nothing of the advertisement but told officers she had a "friend" who she paid to place ads and take phone calls from clients.
The documents stated Luo was "unwilling to implicate any associate" and became agitated with police over questions about the notebook.
The documents stated: "It is suspected the document reflects daily cash takings for prostitution services for the purpose of an unlawful business and the distribution of payments to another part."
Checks of Luo's mobile phone revealed she used a communication app to organise large cash transfers into a Chinese bank account.
Defence lawyer Jun Pepito said his client had only just moved to Gladstone after she was told by friends it was a "nice place".
He said Luo's first client was the covert police officer.
Magistrate Neil Lavaring said it wasn't often the courts saw prostitution cases.
He fined Luo $500 for the offending and did not record a conviction.