Police lay prostitution charges at Gatineau bawdy house
Three people are facing prostitution-related charges after police busted a Gatineau massage parlour operating in the same building as a daycare.
Police arrested two women aged 25 and 30, as well as a man in his 60s at a bawdy house operating under the name Acqua Relaxation Spa in unit 104 on Greber Boulevard.
Police discovered the massage parlour was rigged with cameras. Someone off-site was watching -- and had the ability to record. Police believe customers weren't notified that the cameras existed and the sessions were being recorded.
"This is an illegal massage saloon -- there was some sexual activities," said Const. Isabelle Poirier of the Gatineau police.
A daycare operator who offered child care in a separate unit just down the hall said she couldn't believe what was going on next door.
Nathalie Sarrette told CTV Ottawa she was never notified of the police investigation.
"Nobody came . . . not the police," said Sarrette, adding she wished police had notified her in consideration of the kids she cares for.
A woman named Tiffany who claims to be a former employee wrote on an online review board that camera and video equipment at the massage parlour was used to keep an eye on the women and their clients. CTV Ottawa reached Tiffany by phone, but she declined comment.
The Gatineau massage parlour also shares a website with Ottawa locations on Bank Street, St. Laurent Boulevard, Carling Avenue and Booth Street.
An Ontario judge recently struck down Canada's anti-prostitution laws, saying they were unconstitutional and dangerous to sex-trade workers. The government is appealing that decision.
Meantime, police say it's becoming more difficult to investigate prostitution and bawdy houses.
"That's the investigations that we are getting into . . . is the women who are in there on their own free will or is it a parasitic relationship with the owners that they are there against their free will," said Ottawa Police Acting Supt. Tyrus Cameron.
Gatineau police say their investigation is ongoing.
With a report from CTV Ottawa's Natalie Pierosara