Girl, 15, saved from prostitution ring

The security guards knew about this shit, too (I heard them talking about it, personally)—why can it happen, just anywhere, so easily?

Teen tells Sun she doesn’t want others duped by pimps

By JENNY YUEN, SUN MEDIA

25th May 2009 

A man enters 1001 Bay St. yesterday, one of the locations where a 15-year-old girl was allegedly held and forced by a pimp to have sex with customers. (Greg Henkenhaf/Sun Media)
A man enters 1001 Bay St. yesterday, one of the locations where a 15-year-old girl was allegedly held and forced by a pimp to have sex with customers. (Greg Henkenhaf/Sun Media)

A 40-year-old Richmond Hill man faces pimping and sex-related charges after a 15-year-old girl was rescued from a prostitution ring by York Regional Police.

The girl, who contacted the Sun yesterday, said she met a man through an escort review message board three weeks ago. He put her on a strict diet — soup and yogurt — so she would stay thin and attract more clients.

“He made fun of my skin because I’m really pale,” she said. “He wanted me to be really thin, so in turn, he could make more money.”

The girl said she ran away from a group home and agreed to stay with a man, who promised her money and shelter at a Bay St. condo — provided she pay a portion of the monthly $3,000 rent. And in order to make the cash, she would have sex with two to seven people a day.

“He took me to get my hair done, which cost $500,” she said. “He did all these things. I felt really guilty and that I owed him.”

York Region’s drugs and vice unit made an arrest at a Toronto condo where they found the 15-year-old hooker.

Police continued their investigation Saturday when they searched two Toronto condo complexes — the one on Bay St. and another on York Mills Rd. — where they believe the girl was held. Investigators alleged they found $16,000 in cash and several items that indicated to them that the apartments were used as common bawdy houses.

“Advertisements were located online and in local newspapers seeking to procure women into prostitution and suggesting sexual services in exchange for money,” Det.-Sgt. Brian Bigras alleged in a statement yesterday.

The girl said her relationship with the pimp became sexual when he “had to test out my skills.”

The girl said he had six other girls working for him and that the pimp told her he was 28 and had been in this business for over eight years.

“He was very secretive, he didn’t want to get caught,” she said. “(The other girls) said they were 18, but he also told me to say I was 18, too. He was taking well over 50% of everything that was made.”

She said her first experience with escorting happened three months ago through another pimp, who was an acquaintance.

The girl said she was taken by the Children’s Aid Society when she was 10 years old to escape her mother’s boyfriend who was abusive.

Currently, she is getting counselling and staying with her mother, who lives outside of Toronto.

“I’m putting myself in a lot of danger by talking about this,” she said. “I see how easy it is to fall for their lies and I don’t want to see that happen to other girls, because I know there are a lot of girls who are under age.”

Renan Gazzali Esahak is charged with sexual interference, procuring a person to leave their usual place of abode, procuring a person to have illicit intercourse with another person, living on the avails of prostitution and keeping a common bawdy house.

He remains in police custody and was scheduled to appear in court yesterday.

Esahak also went by the names, “Ray” or “Kelsey,” police said.

Anyone with information is asked to call investigators at 1-866-876-5423 or call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS.

JENNY.YUEN@SUNMEDIA.CA

Yells, then ‘pop, pop, pop’

November 23, 2009 

Jennifer Yang 

{{GA_Article.Images.Alttext$}} View from 1001 Bay St. tower to pavement in front, where a late-night disturbance led to gunfire that killed man, despite CPR attempts at the scene. 

JENNIFER YANG/TORONTO STAR

Loud yelling, five or six gunshots and then screams shattered the early-morning quiet as a man collapsed, dying on the pavement in front of a Bay St. condo tower early Sunday. 

Hours later, forensic investigation officers were in front of 1001 Bay St., at St. Joseph St., looking for clues to the 3:20 a.m. slaying. The victim was shot in the back. 

What appeared to be a black jacket lay crumpled a few metres from the lobby doors and blood stains could be seen on the sidewalk. 

On Bay St., Zico Barnett and Liz Lyons were awoken on their first night in their new fifth-floor home by loud yelling outside. 

“Then we heard the shots,” Lyons said. Barnett said he heard five or six shots and went to the window. He saw the victim on the ground and about eight “young guys screaming, trying to get the ambulance.” 

Barnett said the victim appeared to be their age and was wearing what looked like baggy jeans, a hoodie, and white and black “skater shoes.” Other witnesses pegged the victim’s age at about 30. 

After hearing “pop, pop, pop” sounds, Brent Williams and a friend he was visiting in the building went to investigate. 

“We came downstairs and went outside and saw someone was giving the guy CPR,” he said. 

“There was a bunch of people out there crying and stuff. They rolled him over because he was face down.” 

Williams said his friend also performed first-aid techniques on the dying man without success. 

Witnesses reported seeing a male who could have been the shooter run down St. Joseph St. and get into a black car, possibly a Honda Civic. He was described as black, with a light complexion, 20 to 30 years old, with a muscular build and wearing a black jacket. 

Hours later a gun was found nearby, at Queen’s Park Cres. Police were conducting tests to establish if shell casings found at the Bay St. crime scene match the recovered weapon. 

A white stretch limousine, a white Hummer-style limousine and a black 2005 or 2006 Infinity SUV were seen departing the scene and might be connected to the slaying. 

John, a 1001 Bay St. resident who declined to give his last name, was shocked by the slaying outside the upscale building. He said he has two out-of-town nieces coming soon for a visit and he hopes they don’t find out what happened. 

“It’s horrible,” he said, out walking his dog and watching police investigators. “Is this the new Finch? That’s the first thing I thought this morning. Very rarely does stuff happen around here.” 

Residents of the condo tower received a memo from the building management informing them of the slaying and noting that one bullet penetrated the south window of the building’s lobby. 

“Early this morning, there was an act of gun violence at the corner of Bay and St. Joseph Sts., which took place between our walkway and the sidewalk at the west entrance for 1001 Bay,” the memo said. 

“The victim is unknown to us and we believe that he is not part of the 1001 Bay community. We offer our condolences to his family.”

 

With files from Joana Draghici and The Canadian Press 

  

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