Auckland Now 12 Sep 2012Underage Maori and Pacific Island sex workers are caught up in illegal prostitution in Auckland, the head of a prostitute support service says.Debbie Baker, from Streetreach, which encourages women to leave prostitution, told Police News that 14 to 16-year-old girls were being pushed into prostitution by gangs to pay off debts.They were so scared of the gangs they would never admit the connection to police, she said.Baker gave examples of one girl who was forced to have sex at Black Power pads around the country to pay off drug debts, and another who was taken from Tauranga to Auckland to work in a brothel.The girl was locked in a room and Baker said she never saw any of the money for the whole time she worked there.It was very difficult for police to uncover the gang’s influence because girls were too scared to acknowledge it.“This fear is often far stronger than the fear they feel for police or other government agencies, as they are often threatened or stood-over, making it even harder for Police and other authorities to prove what’s going on,” Baker said.Acting area commander for Manurewa Inspector Richard Wilkie said police in South Auckland were doing all they could to address the problem of underage prostitution.There were regular stings of popular hangouts like Northcrest and Hunter’s Corner and as a result he said they were picking up fewer people than in previous months.Wilkie said police intelligence suggested gangs were the main force behind the illegal trade.http://www.stuff.co.nz/auckland/local-news/7654574/Gangs-force-sex-trade-on-underage-girls
A Chinese woman charged with illegally entering President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort wants to represent herself in court.This morning a federal judge is set to rule on whether Yujing Zhang can fire her public defenders and represent herself. Zhang has pleaded not guilty to charges of trespassing at Mar-a-Lago and lying to Secret Service agents. Agents arrested the 33-year-old in March 2019 after they say she lied her way past several security checkpoints and onto Mar-a-Lago property. She later told the club’s receptionist she was there to attended a United Nations Chinese American Association event; an event which did not exist.Once detained, agents say they found Zhang carrying four cellphones, an external hard drive and a thumb drive with computer malware; prosecutors later said when the thumb drive was tested a second time the malware could not be detected.In her hotel room, investigators say they also found $8,000 in cash, nine USB drives, five SIM cards and a device that could possibly be used to detect hidden cameras.Last week, the assistant federal public defender wrote in court documents that Zhang would not meet with a psychologist but has appeared mentally competent in interviews with her attorneys.If convicted, Zhang faces up to five years in prison.Her hearing is scheduled for 10 a.m. Tuesday at the federal courthouse in Fort Lauderdale.