31 illegal Nigerian immigrants in Copenhagen, Denmark were all arrested on prostitution on Thursday morning, rounded up in a police sweep of Istedgage, Vesterbro district of the city.
20 other suspects fled the scene and evaded capture during the raid. Those caught were charged with holding false residency permits,working without a premit and vagrancy. The women will be counselled by social workers trained in dealing with trafficking victims while their immigration statuses are verified, and are scheduled to appear in court over the next few days.
There has been an increase in African prostitutes in the city, which, thanks to legal prostitution in the country, has drawn an increasing number of immigrant prostitutes that Kjeld Farcinsen of the Copenhagen Police decscribed as “increasingly aggressive.”
“When our undercover officers approach them, the women make no attempt to hide the fact that they are offering sex for money,” Farcinsen told Politiken newspaper.
Farcinsen went on to say that the city’s police will be conducting more night raids in the coming weeks, in hopes of catching more illegal prostitutes.
Prostitution is legal in Denmark and carefully monitored, but non-residents are not allowed to engage in the profession. Nigerians form the largest contingent of Africans working in the trade.