Sin City Living Up To Its Name

Written by:
Greg Tingle
Published on:
Sin City

G'day punters, gamers, entertainment news junkies, casino and media millionaires and billionaires, journalists, politicians and one and all. You've long suspected it, but now its wide out in the open - 'Sin Sydney' Sydney is well and truly living up to its name. Illegal gambling dens, widespread prostitution, drugs running rampant, crime related shootings a daily part of life in name it. Media Man and Gambling911 continue to probe real life 'Underbelly' Sin City style...

Many media and gaming commentators are now calling Sydney the Amsterdam of the South Pacific', and they might just be hinting at something like real life 'Underbelly' or even real life 'Pulp Fiction' and 'Dirty Deeds' type happenings.

Gamblers Paradise?...

Ok, there's Star City Casino, the only legal casino in Sydney, but have you heard about the non legal games of poker and two-up at Bondi Beach, Maroubra Beach, Surry Hills, Darlinghurst, Kings Cross and Goulburn?  Have you found those illegal slots - one armed bandits at those secret locations in and around Sydney? Word is that are usually back of venue and "invitation only" - mate telling mate, and certainly not advertised.  Melbourne, down south in the state of Victorian is understood to not be far behind for those who like a punt, with the Melbourne Cup and James Packer owned Crown Casino being the two most prominent above board (legal) brands. The success of those should tell the reader a thing or two about just how popular gambling remains to be in Australia, financial crisis or not. Website portals with some gambling news and content also remain to be in the Hitwise Australia top ten, year after year. Yeah maties, Australia love a punt.

Sex In The City And Sex In The Suburbs - The Oldest Profession...

A new confidential New South Wales Government document reveals Sydney alone has more than 50% the number of legal brothels than in the whole of Victoria and Queensland combined.

In Sydney there were officially 244 legal brothels, with a further 90 complaints about "suspected" illegal brothels. By comparison, all of Victoria has just over 90 legal brothels, while Queensland has 24. All up, NSW has 271 legal brothels, including full-service and "happy ending" massage brothels. Just look for the tantalising and titillating names on buildings and listed in the 'Adult Services' section of the newspapers, we understand you will be on the right track.

A few months ago a Gambling911 - Media Man report outlined how Murdoch's News Limited websites came under the spotlight as "porn". It's understood that a couple of well organised 'bible bashers' and 'God Squad' types were behind the outing of News Limited. Adult services and the like are well advertised in Australia, and in recent years mainstream media has been doing strong coverage of risque and adult activities, brands and so on. The last few years of 'Sexpo' has been a huge success, and the Sydney leg of the event is held at Fox Studios, Moore Park.  It's almost a "family affair". Oh, for the record Media Man is a former pro active member of EROS - the Australian Adult Entertainment Association, so we know a thing or two about these things. For the record, we are not in the Australian adult entertainment business, but we have covered it from time to time over the years.

Brothels Thriving; Easier And Cheaper To Establish And Run Than Pokie Palace Pub...

The numbers coming in are understood to be the first definitive statistics compiled statewide. Just what law enforcement will do now that they have the hard date remains to been seen.

Now get this...only 56 of the state's 152 councils took the time to respond to the survey by the NSW Government. The state's other 96 councils refused or put in in the "too hard basket" or "no comment" category. Country NSW is where a number of the quite councils are based, with brothels out west enjoying a roaring trade, with truckies and miners been some of the typical type of cliental.

Senior NSW officials showed the figures in March via a report by the Government Interagency Brothels Taskforce, involving 4 separate agencies. It is understood the Government has been extremely reluctant to release them because they are seen as "political dynamite" ahead of next year's state election. Who can forget the last election where NSW copped a beating, not to mention a number of sex scandals, many of which Labor party MPs and staff were involved in. A bit close to home hey?

Stat demonstrate that 150 illegal brothels operate in the state, with 100's hidden and going unreported. Leaks say there are at least 10,000 sex - adult workers in NSW. Putting the state on a par with Amsterdam. The burlesque profession - industry enjoys some cross over with the adult and sex sector, as does the "massage", modelling and fashion industry, but ties can be hard to prove.

Amsterdam is understood to be clawing back back its legal brothel numbers due to major issues with organised crime, people trafficking and worse.

It has long been suspected Sydney is the sex capital of Australia, but the figures have surprised industry insiders.

The updated stats have alarmed industry experts. A former ICAC and National Crime Authority organised crime investigator...who has raided 200 plus brothels across 'Sin' Sydney advised the figures were the first ever gathered by a NSW government.

"The proliferation of brothels has resulted from dysfunctional planning laws and legislation governing sex premises in NSW. There's no control. The approval process, which only looks at development issues, has no provision for any criminal links with owners or operators, unlike liquor licensing laws."

Chris Seage, an ex consultant to the above board brothel industry in NSW, said re the figures "I'm staggered. I only thought there were about 150 legal brothels in NSW. Now it turns out there's double, and that's only in a third of the councils."

Seage said the key reason for the massive growth in legal brothels in NSW was "laissez faire" regulation.

"We've left everything in the hands of councils, who are toothless in clamping down. There's no probity checks done in NSW. Any Tom, Dick or Harry can own a brothel, irrespective of their criminal background. You can be a murderer or a crime boss and legally own a brothel authorised by council."

Acting Lord Mayor of Parramatta, Mike McDermott, tended to agree councils did not have the ability to stop the spread of brothels "We've been powerless to stop brothels starting up in our area."

Mr McDermott has been unable to limit the 20 brothels in his area alone.

What's Your Poison?...

So, take a look at your suburb. One must wonder if there's x amount of legal brothers, pokies and other vice, just how much may be hidden?

A Media Man spokesperson was prepared to go on record with "As is the case with many industries, its often a matter of who you know, relationships, history, associates giving you tip offs and the like. Some things are a pretty exclusive club. Most parts of the world have an underground, hidden industry or two. An underbelly if you will. Sin Sydney is no different but at times its like Sydney likes to show it off. Lads mags, internet porn websites, adult directories and even burlesque events may have even fueled it along. A large part of Sydney just loves their vice. To each their own. Sin Sydney seems appropriately named."

- Greg Tingle is a Special Contributor to the website and proprietor of Media Man International