Ashdod man held on white slavery charges

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Subject: Ashdod man held on white slavery charges
From: Walsh, Maureen (
Date: Wed Jun 14 2000 - 08:12:37 EDT

>From the Jerusalem Post, June 13, 2000

               Ashdod man held on white slavery charges
               By Heidi J. Gleit

               RAMLE (June 13) - Ramle Magistrate's Court yesterday
               remanded Boris Yasser, 18, of Ashdod, for one week on
               suspicion that he helped his father smuggle four young
               women into the country from Ukraine and force them to
               work as prostitutes.

               Police are searching for Yasser's father, who is believed
               to be abroad, and several other suspects.

               Yasser is suspected of kidnapping, threats, forgery,
               assault, pimping, rape, and holding prisoners.

               The women, 19 to 22, also were arrested for entering the
               country illegally and holding false IDs. That they were
               victimized while they were here does not mitigate the fact
               that they violated Israeli law by entering the country
               illegally, Central District police spokeswoman Ch.-Supt.
               Sivan Kedmi said.

               At least two of the women knew that they would be
               working as prostitutes, she said, adding that one of them
               was expelled from Israel before for prostitution.

               Judge Zahva Bustan ordered that the women be released
               last night and placed under house arrest for two weeks at
               an undisclosed location that the police and the women's
               attorney agreed upon. The Interior Ministry issued
               expulsion orders against them yesterday, and it is
               expected to take two weeks to carry them out.

               Attorney Israel Klein, who is representing the women,
               called Bustan's decision "liberal and very wise." In most
               cases like this, the women are kept in prison until they are
               expelled from the country, he said, adding that this is
               unjust since the women are victims and do not deserve to
               be treated as criminals.

               The women told police that they were offered jobs as
               saleswomen. Upon accepting the jobs, they were brought
               here from Ukraine via Cyprus. They were smuggled into
               Haifa Port on April 31. Their employers then confiscated
               their passports and gave them fake IDs, which listed them
               as Jewish Israelis.

               Two of the women were "sold" to a brothel in Tel Aviv
               for $3,000 each. The other two were imprisoned in a
               Rishon Lezion apartment and forced to work as

               Customers would call the apartment to order prostitutes.
               Yasser would drive the women to various locations to
               serve between 15 and 20 customers a day.

               For the month and a half they have been here, the women
               were virtual prisoners and did not receive a share of the
               money the pimps collected from customers. One of the
               woman was severely beaten when she tried to escape.
               She later managed to telephone her parents in Ukraine to
               ask for help. Her parents contacted the Ukrainian
               Embassy here, which passed the complaint on to police
               this week.

               A policeman telephoned the apartment and posed as a
               client. He agreed to pay NIS 600 for two prostitutes to
               be brought to him at a Tel Aviv hotel on Sunday night.
               When Yasser showed up with the women, police
               arrested them.

               Later that night they located the brothel the other two
               were at, arrested them, and questioned the brothel's

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