Ripped off by a Soho clip joint… what to do? Watch

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L i b
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#21
Report 11 years ago
#21
They probably move about and such, but it might be worth telling the police just to draw their attention to it.

But yes, generally don't wander into dodgy places with prostitutes and dodgy doormen.
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tomoli
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#22
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#22
(Original post by The Boosh)
lol i'm afraid this one has been blown out of the water - you have to expect these moralist reactions on tsr.
I'm afraid if one posts something like this, one is always likely to be judged despite requests not to be.
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Dozzer_Cufc
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#23
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#23
I'm on the only one who finds the thought of a menu amusing?
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Limpopo
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#24
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#24
A message to all,especially foreign travellers to the UK and in particular, London. There is a swirling cesspit area around soho where they have various bars and clubs. If you go in one, you will come out very much poorer. If you go in there with a credit card, they will rip you off for hundreds and maybe more. DO NOT enter any of these establishments.
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Marco1
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#25
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#25
There are a handful of these clip joints or 'near beers' as the Met Police call them in Rupert and Great Windmill Street. They provide no service at all except to rip off, by trickery and intimidation the passing customer. The girls on the doors give the hardsell and distract you from reading the minutely printed wall sign with the outrageously inflated prices on it. Apparently that ridiculous inappropriate sign is enough to form a loophole in the law for these shameful rip-off joints to remain open. I can only assume there are monetary pay-offs involved. They should all be shut down immediately but for many years they keep peddling their duplicitous, seedy misery to unsuspecting punters. The scummy hardmen guys that come out of the room when it's leaving time often look like Albanian/Romanian pimp types, a particularly base form of human pond life, but in these places there is no striptease or sex. Going to the police station will get you stuff all. Your only chance of getting your dosh back would have been to grab a passing PC if one was about and explain your situation. Some individual PCs are passionate enough about justice to go down there and demand them to hand over the cash. I've seen it personally. Whereas others are not so motivated and explain about the small sign in the doorway.
God only knows why these awful criminal dens aren't prosecuted for fraud. A small sign doesn't make it right. They're criminals. On duty, I asked an Inspector once, why the near beers were allowed to operate. He seemed to dislike my question and simply said, 'It was part of the Soho atmosphere that visitors expect', as if that was a credible answer! There are plenty of legit strip clubs in Soho that do not rip off and intimidate customers.
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MatureStudent36
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#26
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#26
(Original post by Anonymous)
This is a long post, so to summarise: Yesterday, I went into a place in Soho agreeing to pay £5 for a strip tease, then, once in, agreed to pay £40 to have sex with a prostitute, but was given a bill for £395 before anything happened, had my wallet emptied of £70, was kept in a room for about half an hour after which they eventually let me leave – minus my £70.

I’d appreciate it if someone could tell whether the clip joint has broken the law, and whether I should go to the police. I’d also appreciate it if I remain anonymous in this thread, although if I do go to the police I won’t have that option of course. I don’t care about the £70 I lost – I have plenty of money. But I do hate swindlers, and don’t want others to have their money stolen like I did. If this is illegal – which it must surely be? – I would like to know what laws precisely have been broken.

(What I would NOT like to know in this thread is your opinion on guys who use prostitutes, thanks.)

--

Walking past “Twilight” in Rupert Street, Soho, a young black woman called out to me offering £5 for a “striptease”. I replied “No thanks.” She then pointed out that they had a licence of some sort from the council, so there would be no “funny business,” or something to that effect. I said “OK then”. Despite being only 18 years old, and fairly young looking for my age, I was not asked for age identification.

I was taken down the stairs to a small, dark room with two leather sofas. The same woman who called out to me on the door made general conversation, asking my name, how my studies were going (I am a first-year university student), etc. Then a man came in, and pointed out the menu on the wall – written in small block-capital print on an A4 piece of paper.

The woman then talked through what they charged for various things (I assumed that they were the things that would be written on the menu), including £40 for sex, which I then asked for. I handed over £40 to her. She asked me what “type” I was looking for, I replied blondes. She bought two in, one after another, neither of whom it appeared could speak any English. I chose the second, and then both women left the room, for about three or four minutes. Then the black woman came back in with the man. The man asked me “did you read the menu?” I replied “no.” He then presented a bill for £395, which included (I think) “hostess fees” and “membership”. I said that I hadn’t asked for these things. He replied that they were obligatory, and pointed to the “menu” on the wall, which indicated so.

I said that I hadn’t bought anything, hadn’t even touched the prostitute, wanted to cancel, and asked for my £40 back. The black woman said that I had already “bought” the hostess fees on entering the building. I said that I had never agreed to do any such thing, and that she had never made it clear that I would be paying for her company. I was asked to sign the “bill”, but refused to do so. I said something like “if I sign, that is effectively accepting that what I have been charged is legitimate, so I’ll have a legal obligation to pay.”

The man said that I would be taken to court if I refused to pay the rest, “so you’ll have to pay anyway…and your parents will find out and everything.” I replied that I didn’t have that much money, and my parents wouldn’t care anyway (the latter is certainly not true). I attempted to walk out, but was physically pushed by the man, who had been standing at the door all of this time, into the woman. She then screamed “what are you doing, you just kicked me!” The man then said that he would also take me to court for assaulting the woman, and pointed to the CCTV camera in the corner. I replied that I had not intended to fall on the woman – I believe that I was deliberately pushed into her, but didn’t say this – and that holding someone prisoner in a room against their will falls within common law definition of assault, so if anyone was guilty, it was him. (I’m not actually sure of what is legal and what isn’t, but think this may be correct.)

The man asked me to open my wallet again, and, fearing for my own physical safety, I agreed, and handed over the remaining £30, and said “I’ll get this back when it goes to court then.” He replied, again insisting that I would be the one forced to pay. I was then told that I would have to go to a bank account to withdraw to pay the rest, and that if I didn’t have enough, whatever was left in my account would be accepted as payment. I refused. He said, “I’m going to double the bill, because you’re wasting my time here as well, but if you sign the original bill now, I’ll let you off though.” Again, I refused to sign either bill.

He threatened to phone the police “now”. I said, “OK, phone the police then,” not actually expecting him to do so. He went out of the room for a few minutes, leaving me and the black woman there. She said, “I bet you think you’re so smart, don’t you?” I said, “yeah, I do actually.” She said, “well if you were that smart you would have read the menu on the door before you came in.” (I didn’t see it – it was not positioned prominently, for obvious reasons.) The man came back, and said that he’d phoned the police, and that they would be here in ten or fifteen minutes. I expected that they were bluffing, and said “OK, let’s wait for them.” About five minutes later, another man came to the door, and said “can you come through.” He then told me to leave. I asked for my £70 back, but he said “you can’t cancel.” I gave up and left.

I walked to the police station. But, on getting there, I just turned back and went home.
Difficult one. With recent changes to the laws in prostitution, you're the one who has by default raped a girl who has been human trafficked, or something like that.

Best to chalk it upto experience and spread the words amongst your mates.

A few friends got done in similar circumstances without asking for a happy ending. The £150 for. Warm can of Heineken is an old favourite.

Best to report them to trading standards but leave out the hooker bit.
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Coffinman
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#27
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#27
(Original post by Marco1)
They're criminals. On duty, I asked an Inspector once, why the near beers were allowed to operate. He seemed to dislike my question and simply said, 'It was part of the Soho atmosphere that visitors expect', as if that was a credible answer!
It's probably their favourite bar.
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caravaggio2
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#28
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#28
(Original post by Coffinman)
It's probably their favourite bar.
Backhanders anyone?
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thunder_chunky
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#29
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#29
Old thread is old. The OP is probably already rotting away with syphilis.
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Jerry66
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#30
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#30
I remember going to this place, Twilight's several years ago in the 2000s.I remember asking the woman at the door,"Is there a menu that I can read, so as to make my final decision" ?
I remember that she replied,, "There is a menu that you can read once you're inside ".
Once I had paid the £5 entry fee, I went inside and was accosted by a man and a woman who asked me what service I wanted and also what drink I wanted.
I explained to them that I wanted to read the menu first before making my final decision .
The first thing that I noticed when I was reading the menu was an eye popping £400 on the price list, so I explained that I didn't have the money for the service.
Luckily the man and woman in the club were distracted, so I used the opportunity to get the **** out of there, although I didn't get my £5 entry fee back, as I was thinking of damage limitation and not being fleeced for several hundred pounds
Last edited by Jerry66; 6 days ago
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