Cambridgeshire

Prostitution reduced in north Cambridge but kerb crawlers remain

Prostitution has been "significantly reduced" in north Cambridge after "overt and covert activity", but kerb crawlers remain a problem, say police.

An operation to clear the Histon Road area began after residents complained to police and the city council.

Ch Insp Dave Sargent said "a core group of 10 females" had been identified.

He said they had been offered support to keep them off the streets, and warned persistent kerb crawlers they would be "relentlessly pursued".

Ch Insp Sargent said the problem of sex workers was brought to the force's attention by "a very active Neighbourhood Watch team".

"We undertook a range of tactics using both male and female police officers," he said.

Kerb crawlers

"We liaised with the Sex Workers' Advisory Network's outreach team which enabled us to find out who these women were.

"We could then get them into the system and get them the care and support they needed while keeping them out of the courts."

He said he had "no doubt" some sex workers had moved from the area to other parts of city, but said "these particular core individuals are no longer walking the streets and offering their services in that respect".

"We're always blatantly aware of displacement whenever we undertake an operation of this sort," he said.

"But we haven't restricted activity to this particular area and we will be looking around."

Ch Insp Sargent said kerb crawling remained a problem in the Histon Road area.

"We are still finding male individuals driving up and down that road looking for that particular kind of activity. That is something we will continue to relentlessly pursue.

"My message is perfectly clear. If and when we can prosecute, we most certainly will do."

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