Portland 'lingerie' club busted for prostitution

Portland 'lingerie' club busted for prostitution
- BY KATU.com Web Staff

PORTLAND, Ore. - Two men were arrested Wednesday morning on charges they were operating a front for prostitution at a southeast Portland lingerie modeling business.

Police say the busts are a culmination of months of undercover police work, and that additional arrests may be forthcoming.

Uniformed and undercover officers searched Sugar Daddy's, located near 135th and Southeast Powell Street Wednesday morning, taking away computers, credit card receipts and other information that may lead them to call customers as witnesses, or even charge them with soliciting prostitution.

Investigators also discovered that a video system was in place to record customers and models, and they confiscated numerous tapes to be used as evidence.

A police spokesman did not say if customers knew they were being taped while they interacted with the women who worked at the business.

He did say that preliminary investigations into the contents of the tapes did reveal that they recorded sexual contact between workers and customers, which is illegal under Oregon law.

Police say busts like the one Wednesday are rare since it takes time to build a case. Police investigators must interview customers and workers, who are typically reluctant to get involved.

The investigation began several months ago after police received complaints that employees were performing sex acts on customers.

Local residents say they are glad to see police move against the business. Even the owner of a strip club located next door to Sugar Daddy's reportedly says he is glad to see the police take action.

A woman living nearby says the club attracted 'seedy' customers, and another neighbor says he felt activity at the club made the area less safe for his children.

"This is an on-going problem with many of the lingerie businesses in Portland and we do occasionally receive complaints," police spokesman Sgt. Schmautz told members of the media at the site of the investigation. "The problem is we need cooperation from women who work there or customers who have been there to cooperate in order to conduct an investigation and to get to the point of a search warrant."