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Date Responded 27 June 2023

Provision of information held by Northumbria Police made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the 'Act')

As you may be aware the purpose of the Act is to allow a general right of access to information held at the time of a request, by a Public Authority (including the Police), subject to certain limitations and exemptions.

You asked:

1) The number of brothels known to your police force within the area that it operates. ('brothels' includes massage parlours and any other premises where it is known to police that sex work is undertaken)

2) the number of reports received by your police force that relate to brothels for each individual year between 2021 and 2023 (inclusive).

3) the number of arrests made in relation to brothels, sex work, and profiting from sex work for each individual year between 2018 and 2023 (inclusive).

In Response:

I am able to disclose the located information to you as follows with the caveats below noted in relation to search methods.

• Every effort is made to ensure that the figures presented are accurate and complete. However, it is important to note that these data have been extracted from a number of data sources used by forces for police purposes. The detail collected to respond specifically to your request is subject to the inaccuracies inherent in any large scale recording system. As a consequence, care should be taken to ensure data collection processes and their inevitable limitations are taken into account when interpreting those data.

• The figures provided therefore are our best interpretation of relevance of data to your request, but you should be aware that the collation of figures for ad hoc requests may have limitations and this should be taken into account when those data are used.

• The answer to question 2 is derived from a search of the incident comments in systems for the keyword 'brothel'.
As with any keyword search, the search will only return exact matches within the incident comments. This does not account for differences in terminology and/or spelling used. Also, we cannot search the crime investigation screens/additional information screens, if the terms are not used within the comments the incident will not be identified.

• The following offences were searched for arrests:

Keeping a brothel for prostitution
Keeping a brothel Letting premises for use as a brothel
Tenant permitting premises to be used as a brothel
Keeping a brothel for homosexual practices Letting premises for use as a brothel for homosexual practices
Tenant permitting premises to be used as a brothel for homosexual practices
Allowing children or young person to be in a brothel
Permitting Licensed premises to be used as a brothel

The only offence identified was that of 'Keeping a brothel for prostitution'.

With all the above noted we respond as follows.

1. There are currently 171 premises on the force intelligence system that have markers for being a location where sex work is provided from.  This number includes historic premises that may not be currently used as a brothel.


Year    Count

2021    88

2022    64

2023    30

Data as of 19/06/23


Year    Count

2018    1

2019    -  

2020    -  

2021    -  

2022    6

2023    -  

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