A PARAGUAYAN couple convicted of running a Mojacar brothel were jailed for five years.
In 2007 they were contacted by a young Paraguayan woman interested in working as a prostitute in Spain, the court heard.
After agreeing to finance her flight from Paraguay, the man accompanied her from Sao Paulo (Brazil) to Madrid.
He also provided US$500 so that she could enter Spain as a tourist. This was paid back by the girl once they were clear of the airport.
The couple and the 21-year-old girl were detained after police from an immigration unit intercepted their car outside Mojacar.
A search of their rented villa in Mojacar-Playa revealed three young Paraguayan women voluntarily working as prostitutes.
Aged between 20 and 25, they told police that they paid the couple 30 per cent of their takings at the villa as well as in hotels.
It could not be demonstrated that the young woman, who received witness protection, had been deceived with false promises, the court ruled.
The court also dismissed claims that she was forced to maintain sexual relations with clients and had her passport removed.
She was not prevented from leaving the Mojacar house or communicating with her family and had not been humiliated, threatened or insulted, the judge said.
Despite the five-year prison sentence, which the couple are appealing against, the court cleared them of four other prostitution counts.
By Linda Hall