Twenty-one men from across the mid-west have been arrested and charged with soliciting after one of the country’s largest prostitute stings outside of Dublin.
Female Gardaí posed as prostitutes in what has been called one of the largest prostitution stings the country has seen outside of the capital. In total 27 men were arrested, however six of them have had their cases adjourned.
The vast majority of the solicitation offences took place between 9pm and midnight in the Barrington Street, Catherine Street and Mallow Street areas of the city.
So how did the female Gardaí pull it off? Well, just like the movies to be honest. The female Gardaí were dressed in plain clothes, presumably not wearing their ‘winter attire’, and were approached by the 21 men looking for some ‘love you long time’. Some of the blokes approached on foot while others were driving cars.
The sting has been codenamed ‘Operation Freewheel’ and will continue over the Christmas holidays and on into the New Year, according to the Irish Independent. Operation Freewheel initially started on November 11 and the last man to be arrested this time around was taken in last Sunday.
The 21 men were aged between 23 and 67 and all of them pleaded guilty in Limerick District Court yesterday to ‘soliciting or importuning female Garda officers for the purpose of prostitution’.
So remember, if you’re looking to get a little something special for yourself this Christmas, check out JOE’s Guide to Christmas and steer clear of Barrington Street, Catherine Street and Mallow Street, unless you’re actually shopping that is.