THREE brothel operators have been handed a heavy sentence by the Gauteng North High Court on Tuesday, 28 March.
The trio ran a brothel in a rented location under fake credentials, and the two men Samson Alichi (36) and Lewis Okoye (38) appeared along their lady co-accused Anell Arendorf (26).
They were charged with contravening the Trafficking in Persons Act (TIP), Sexual Offences Act, kidnapping, fraud, and forgery.
Samson and Lewis were additionally charged with contravening the Immigration Act for being in the country illegally.
Gauteng Hawks spokesman Captain Lloyd Ramovha said their evil crimes surfaced in 2020 when they responded to a call from a distressed woman who was invited to come to Gauteng from the Eastern Cape.
He said Lewis contacted the woman through Facebook in hopes of pursuing a romantic relationship.
“They fell in love over time, or at least that is what the victim thought. Lewis convinced her to join him in Gauteng for a better and affluent life that he reportedly often displayed on social media platforms,” Ramovha said.
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Not holding back at a chance of meeting her lover, Ramovha said in August 2020 the victim arrived at Park station, Johannesburg.
After arriving at Lewis’s house, a secure complex along Cedar Road in Fourways, Joburg the victim was met with women who were in and out of the unit’s bedrooms with different men.
“At this stage, the victim wanted to leave as she was concerned about her safety. Lewis forced her to stay against her will.
The woman stayed overnight and managed to call for help the following day using another person’s cellphone,” Ramovha said.
The hawks responded to the address and rescued the victim who was unharmed.
The woman then described her horror and revealed how they tried to force her to take drugs.
Samson and Lewis were sentenced to 36 years imprisonment each and were ordered to be deported to their country of origin after they spend 12 years in jail, while Anell was sentenced to five years in prison.