Sex workers told to take care as arrest made following violent attacks

An organisation that supports sex workers held a meeting last night calling for greater levels of caution after a man suspected of violent attacks was arrested over the weekend.

The Sex Workers Alliance Ireland had called the meeting last week in light of what it claimed was a number of violent attacks against sex workers, and more specifically, some that appeared to target Brazilian trans sex workers.

SWAI spokeswoman Kate McGrew said the meeting, held at an undisclosed location in Dublin, had been called due to a spate of attacks, some of which involved money being taken and many involving violence.

Ms McGrew said some but not all of the attacks had been reported to gardaí and that these were being investigated.

Gardaí confirmed yesterday that a man had been arrested over the weekend and detained for questioning.

A statement issued later by the Garda Press Office said: “Gardaí in Pearse Street have arrested and charged one man (21 years) in relation to an assault and robbery that occurred in May 2017. This man was charged and was remanded in custody to appear before Cloverhill District Court on Friday, July 7, 2017. Investigations are ongoing.”

Ms McGrew said as many as 10 sex workers had been attacked in recent months at different locations around Dublin city centre.

SWAI on Twitter issued a number of warnings in recent days, urging sex workers to take precautions, such as only dealing with established clients or working in pairs or groups.

It was claimed the attacks involved two men, who would arrange to meet sex workers online before then robbing them.

Ms McGrew asked anyone with information about any incidents to come forward and report them to gardaí, regardless of any concerns they might have over their immigration status.

It is understood that a number of complaints are being investigated by gardaí.

Ms McGrew also said there should be more legislation to cover hate crimes in Ireland.

The SWAI was a vocal campaigner against new laws introduced this year which criminalised the buying of sex, claiming it would push the sex trade further underground.



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