Immigration officials bust prostitution racket

Staff writer, with CNA

Thu, Jun 12, 2014 - Page 5

Immigration officials on Tuesday announced they had busted a prostitution ring in northern Taiwan that had been recruiting Chinese women using fake marriage credentials.

Immigration officers in Hsinchu County conducted simultaneous raids as police in China’s Fujian Province arrested the suspected ringleaders on forgery, violation of public decency and other charges.

Officials said that interviews with Chinese women who immigrated through marriage in June last year revealed that 13 of them had had nearly identical “conversations” with their respective husbands on instant messaging services, raising suspicions.

After a lengthy investigation, authorities identified the suspected ringleaders as a man surnamed Hsu in Taiwan and another surnamed Lin (林) in China.

The prostitution ring was found to be recruiting Chinese women willing to travel to Taiwan for the sex trade, then matching them with willing Taiwanese men for a marriage of convenience to facilitate their entry into the nation.

Officials said that in light of the popularity of South Korean pop culture in Taiwan, the recruited Chinese women included one 28-year-old who underwent cosmetic surgery to make herself look more “Korean” and therefore more “attractive to clients.”

Other Chinese women entered Taiwan under the pretense of doing business, seeking medical care or tourism, officials said.

The National Immigration Agency found that one of the women had spent NT$100,000 on plastic surgery to ensure she would be popular with customers.