Jakarta. The National Police have pledged full assistance to the South Jakarta Police as the latter investigate an upscale prostitution ring said to involved hundreds of top actresses and models.
South Jakarta Police arrested on Saturday a suspected pimp, Robby Abbas, 31, for allegedly supplying prostitutes to senior government officials and businessmen at a rate of Rp 80 million to Rp 200 million ($6,080 to $15,200) per session.
Robby on Monday confirmed that he had a list of 200 women for hire, aged between 22 and 30.
“More than half of them are celebrities, but not all,” he told reporters at the South Jakarta Police headquarters.
With his face hidden beneath a mask and sporting the orange jacket of a police detainee, Robby said that he started out as a makeup artist in 1998. He said his work allowed him to gain access to many actresses and models, and before long people began asking him to introduce them to the celebrities.
“I’ve been pimping since 2012,” he said. “I was asked to supply some celebrities. I’ve since supplied many of them. I personally hook them up for a 20 percent cut.”
But Robby said it was the women themselves who negotiated the prices. “Sometimes I only get Rp 1 million to Rp 3 million. In a month I only make one or two [deals], and some months none at all,” he said.
Robby also claimed he was picky about the johns, whom he said were mostly business executives and government officials.
“I look at the way [the johns] talk, their appearance, where they’re from and where they live,” he said. “Some [girls] I offer [to the johns] but normally it’s [the johns] who ask ‘do you know this model?’ If I do, then I introduce [the model] to them.”
Robby said he offered the girls through personal messaging services such as BlackBerry Messenger and WhatsApp, with johns expected to book a day or two in advance.
The scheme was unraveled after a raid on Wednesday at a five-star hotel in South Jakarta, in which police arrested Robby and a B-list actress and model identified only by the initials A.A.
The woman later told police that she had just finished a “short time” engagement at the hotel where she was paid Rp 80 million for a three-hour session. She claimed she could earn up to Rp 1.6 billion a month as a call girl.
Adj. Sr. Comr. Audie Latuheru, the South Jakarta Police’s chief of detectives, said police had charged Robby but would treat A.A. as a witness in the case. She was later released from custody.
Police also plan to question all the women on Robby’s list as well as his high-profile clients.
South Jakarta Police chief Sr. Comr. Wahyu Hadiningrat said Robby also catered to foreign johns.
“Based on the evidence, [Robby’s list of johns] reaches as far as Boston, Kuala Lumpur and Thailand, aside from local [johns] in Bali, Surabaya and Jakarta,” he said.
“What is clear is that the clients are people with money, because the prices range from Rp 80 million to Rp 200 million for a three-hour session,” Wahyu said. “For overseas, the price is different. It can reach up to Rp 200 million plus the airfare.”
The National Police’s chief of detectives, Comr. Gen. Budi Waseso, pledged his office’s full support of the investigation, during a visit to the South Jakarta Police headquarters on Monday specifically to consult on the case.
“The whole investigation will be carried out by the [South Jakarta Police], while we will back them up. This includes my own cybercrimes team,” he said.
“Whoever breaks the law will be prosecuted. We’re not ruling out the possibility that some rogue [government] officials are involved. But we have to look for more evidence. So far it is only [Robby’s] own claims, which need to be proven.”
Waseso also warned the public not to speculate about the celebrities on Robby’s list of women for hire. “We can’t just throw out accusations. Just trust where the investigation will lead,” he said.
He also warned of similar rackets taking place on a smaller scale. “They might not be as big but they do exist,” he said.