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Claims of 'sex slavery' in Oz brothels under garb of student visas being probed

October 15, 2011 - Canberra

The Australian immigration ministry has called for investigations into claims that migration agents are helping to bring women to the country on student visas who end up working in conditions of sexual slavery or at illegal brothels.

Immigration Minister Chris Bowen called for the student visa program to be investigated after the allegations of manipulation by the sex industry in Melbourne emerged.

He said if any links between the sex industry and inappropriate use of student visas were found, then information would be given to the Australian Federal Police.

"My department routinely conducts compliance operations in the sex industry, generally as joint operations with the AFP, to ensure the owners are not employing foreign nationals working without a valid visa or in breach of work conditions," the Herald Sun quoted Bowen, as saying.

"Following particularly serious and disturbing allegations, it is only appropriate that a thorough analysis now occurs," he added.

It recently emerged that women were told that they would be studying at private schools or universities only to be sold into sex slavery.

One woman said she was forced to pay back 20,000 dollars she never actually received by having sex with thousands of men, the report said.


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