KUALA LUMPUR: A massage centre in Kota Damansara, Petaling Jaya, has used WeChat to promote prostitution.
The tactic was detected when 19 officers from the Immigration Department raided the premises at 10pm on Monday night.
Its director-general Datuk Seri Mustafar Ali said the department had conducted intelligence operation to verify the modus operandi used by the massage centre which has been raided several times by the department.
“Initial information indicated that the operator offers sex service via WeChat besides using a special website for the customers to choose the prostitute before they go to the massage centre.
“A customer needs to pay RM170 for the service, of which RM100 is for the employer and the balance is tips for the woman. The operator can make more than RM10,000 a day,” he said in a statement today.
Mustafar said prostitution activities normally took place on the first or second floor of a private office to avoid being detected by the enforcement authorities.
“In the raid on Monday, 18 foreign women - 10 Vietnamese, Indonesian (5) and Thailand (3) - all in their 20s were arrested for allegedly giving sex service at the massage centre.
“During the operation, four of the women tried to escape by hiding in a secret room, but failed. Also seized was a supervisor, in his 30s.
“Inspection found the premises was operating without a valid business licence and had illegally renovated the 4th floor of the building to facilitate the illicit activities,” he said, adding that five notices were issued against the customers.
He said the premises were raided early April and 14 women were arrested, but the massage centre re-opened.
The women who were found without valid travel documents and had overstayed were kept at Putrajaya detention centre.
They were detained under Anti-Trafficking in Persons and Anti-Smuggling of Migrants Act 2007, Immigration Act 1959/63 and Passports Act 1966.
“All parties, especially local authorities, are urged to take firm action against premises that carry out unlicensed and immoral activities to prevent unlawful activities despite frequent raids.
“People and employers are reminded not to protect illegal immigrants because legal action could be taken against them.
“At the same time, those with information are required to channel the information to us in an effort to curb such activities,” he said.