Somerset

Weston-super-Mare brothel owner exposed in BBC report is jailed

Natalie Davis Image copyright Avon and Somerset Police
Image caption Natalie Davis was jailed for two years and six months after pleading guilty to controlling prostitution for gain

A woman who ran a brothel from a flat in Weston-super-Mare has been jailed after being exposed in a BBC report.

Natalie Davis, of Bristol Road, Hewish, admitted controlling prostitution for gain from Butterfly's massage parlour in Somerset for more than a decade.

The 51-year-old was exposed in a BBC investigation into allegations of exploitation in the town, in 2017.

Police said Davis, jailed at Bristol Crown Court for two years and six months, had exploited vulnerable women.

Davis ran Butterfly's massage parlour out of a flat on Alexandra Parade from 2007, Avon and Somerset Police said after the sentencing hearing.

But officers only became aware of the business following a BBC Inside Out West report.

"Plain clothed officers subsequently visited the premises on three occasions during which they were offered sexual services," a police spokesman said.

"No sexual activity took place as all the officers made excuses and left immediately after the offers were made."

Image caption A search by officers discovered sex toys in cupboards

A search warrant was executed at the massage parlour and a "number of sex toys were found locked in cupboards" by officers.

An investigation into her business finances also revealed that Davis was profiting from the sexual services offered by the parlour's employees.

Ch Insp Leanne Pook, said: "Natalie Davis shamelessly exploited vulnerable women for her own personal gain.

"It's clear from printed documents found in her home she had researched prostitution and the running of brothels online and that she knew what she was doing was illegal."

In addition to a jail sentence, Davis was also given a Serious Crime Prevention Order allowing police to monitor her business dealings for five years.

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