THREE women have been arrested on suspicion of running a brothel after a police raid on an upmarket Leeds city centre apartment.
Officers caught two customers along with two of the women in a state of undress when they entered the plush flat at Clarence Dock last night.
They arrested the two women on site. A third who arrived at the flat while they were carrying out investigations was also held.
The trio – aged 20, 29 and 32 – have been bailed following questioning pending further enquiries.
A large amount of cash was also seized, along with mobile phones and computer equipment, which will be analysed for evidence.
The raid followed complaints from neighbours about anti-social behaviour, with up to 15 men turning up at the apartment on some nights.
Acting Inspector Andy Berriman, of City Neighbourhood Policing Team (NPT), said: “This was about two things – stopping the anti-social behaviour that can cause misery for people living nearby and tackling the organised crime that is often linked to the running of brothels.
“A thorough investigation will now take place into other criminal activity that may be involved.
“There is also a concern about the potential vulnerability of the women involved and whether they are being coerced to work as prostitutes.
“We are working with UK immigration and partner agencies to offer any support needed.”
The Yorkshire Evening Post was invited to join the raid, which involved NPT officers, special constables and officers from West Yorkshire Police’s operations support unit.
At a briefing at Millgarth police station, officers were told that there had been a number of complaints from neighbours about the problems caused by the alleged brothel.
In some cases other residents had been disturbed by clients mistakenly turning up at their flats.
The raid took place at 9.45pm, after information was received that two men had arrived at the apartment.
Operations support officers used battering rams to put the doors through.
The two women were arrested. Their two customers were questioned while police searched the flat for evidence.
Sergeant Ritchie Towers, of the NPT, who ran the operation, said: “Items of property such as computer equipment and mobile phones were seized as evidence along with a substantial amount of cash.
“The women have been subsequently interviewed and bailed pending further enquiries.
“We acted swiftly on information from a concerned local resident who has had this happening on their doorstep. This is a prime example of the police and the public working together to prevent crime.“
Anyone with suspicions about similar problems should call police on 101.