• Sunday, October 12, 2008 - By LUCKY NWANKWERE (Just back from Moscow)
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• Pushed down three-story building

Are you a woman being lured to Moscow, the Russian capital, for prostitution? You had better watch it. You may be heading for an early grave. Moscow is not the best of places for the profession, particularly for blacks. If you dare, you may learn too late, in the hands of a certain group of Russian youths popularly called the ‘skin heads.’

At the time of filing this report, arrangement had been concluded to smuggle three Nigerian girls back to the country from Moscow. They will be returning empty handed after spending nothing less than one and a half years each in Moscow.
Indeed, one of them would be arriving with a serious health problem, having being thrown down from the third floor of an apartment where she had been invited to keep a date with a client.

For the rest of their lives, they would have cause to be thankful to God and the Nigerian Embassy in Moscow headed by Major-General Timothy Shelpidi (rtd) for saving their lives. The girls, like many others in the city, had been taken to Russia by a powerful clique (made up of Nigerians and Russians), which specializes in trafficking Nigerian girls for prostitution.
In keeping with the practice, they were on arrival, handed over to a ‘mistress’, a Russian who deploys them as sex machines, while she smiles to the bank with the proceed.

Madam collects the money, the girls provide the sex
The girls are kept under lock and key and used daily to satisfy the sexual cravings of men. Clients make bookings for the girls through the ‘mistress.’ And none of the girls knows how much each client pays to ‘madam’ to sleep with them. Yet they are taken away to provide sexual satisfaction to men who had paid to the mistress, and returned whenever the task was accomplished. This is a daily routine for the girls.

They don’t touch the money and are not allowed to think for themselves or step outside their confines without the knowledge and approval of the mistress.
The most dangerous aspect of the business is the multiple rape they are subjected to by some of the clients. The Nigerian Ambassador to Russia, Shelpidi, said if only the girls knew the danger inherent in the business, they would never allow themselves to be deceived into coming to the country.
One of the girls had gone to keep a date with a client only to discover that she was to serve as sex machine to several clients, not one, as she had thought.

Multiple sex partners
According to an account, the Nigerian girl was still wondering what was happening, when more of the men began to emerge from the wardrobe in the apartment. She reportedly protested that she would not allow herself to be subjected to the harrowing experience of multiple sex partners.

Flung down from third floor
Angered by her insistence not to ‘co-operate’, the ‘skin heads’ threw her down from the third floor apartment. She miraculously survived but not without serious injury, which even affected her spine. She is among the other two who escaped from their mistresses to the Nigerian Embassy for protective custody, waiting to be brought back to Nigeria.
While lamenting the inability of the relevant authorities back home to fish out the members of the clique and bring them to book, Shelpidi said the lives of more Nigerian girls would be put at risk except concrete steps were taken to stop those behind the shameful act.

Madam confiscates $36, 000
The ambassador said the girls ran to the embassy with only the dress they were wearing, nothing more. One of them reportedly claimed that she fetched over $36,000 (about N4.2 million) for her mistress in the last one year, but was not given a dime.
The envoy also decried the difficulty in hosting the girls in the embassy, pointing out that a lot of money had gone into feeding and providing them clothing materials. Since there is no grant to the embassy for contingency, he explained that the staff of the embassy had resorted to contributing money to take care of the girls in the spirit of being their ‘sisters’ keepers’.
The envoy said he said he had contacted the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) for possible assistance to fly the victims back to Nigeria.

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