The Pimp That Wasn’t There

“…one day while snooping on the stair I saw a pimp that wasn’t there…”

In February 2012, the then disgraced RTE “Prime Time” investigative team produced and aired a  documentary called “Profiting From Prostitution” . In any rational context this would have been dismissed as unsubstantiated tabloid television, but in the context of the Irish Sex work consultation of 2013 it was elevated to academic status and the leader of the Investigative Team was invited to give lengthy evidence to the same Joint Oireachtas Committee that had seemed to move heaven and earth to exclude any sex worker or former sex worker who was not affiliated to “Turn Off the Red Light”, and only heard from two unrepresentative tokens migrant sex workers as token because, at great personal risk, a way was found to get the issue of exclusion on the 6 o’clock news and into the broadsheets.

I am including so many links because I honestly do not expect you to take this pythonesque saga seriously without them.

One of the features in “Profiting From Prostitution” was a man they presented as some kind of sinister pimp. The man in question took exception to this, particularly when his welfare benefits were stopped. He decided to challenge this in the high court. The decision was quashed and he  received significant reparation.

In November 2015 the same RTE Team produced and aired a documentary of similar quality called “Sex for Sale” . During the documentary they repeatedly allude to the presence of a man “they could not name or film for legal reasons” who had won a high court action after being named in the previous documentary. The made it clear that they had investigated and found him to be some kind of sex trafficking godfather.

The Ruhama Christmas Newsletter spells it out on page 4 even specifying how much money he received.

One small problem, on 5 June 2014 the man in question was arrested and charged with an offence unrelated to the sex industry, best described as being a complete muppet he does not seem to have gone to trial or been released on bail since. It seemed remarkably unlikely that he would receive a non-custodial sentence (on the plus side there does not seem to be any “earnings” to affect his benefits). It shouldn’t be hard for a “crack TV Investigative team” with quasi academic status at government level to fully establish this.

It took me 20 minutes on google to get this far.

This should be a standing joke, but, instead the pimp who wasn’t there is being publicly presented as verified evidence in support of abusive legislation.

In my day nobody was allowed to go around stating that people were out and about committing crimes when, in fact, they were in prison, much less the national broadcaster, elected representatives and Ministers of state.

At least the man in question should have a nice nest egg to look forward to when he gets out.