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Brazilian police detain 118 tourists in raids on sex tourism
2006-04-01 20:25:53 Xinhua English
BRASILIA, April 1(Xinhua)-- Brazilian police detained 118 tourists for failing to carry proper identification into nightclubs in operations to curb sex tourism in a northeastern city, police said on Saturday.

More than 70 federal agents raided two nightclubs known for strippers show and using girls to attract tourists, and detained 110 tourists early Friday and another eight early Saturday in the city of Natal, 2,450 km northeast of Sao Paulo in Rio Grande do Norte state.

The agents questioned all customers in the pubs and asked to see their identification, but the tourists- mostly from Portugal, Spain, Italy, France and Norway- did not carry their passports or international identification cards that Brazil requires of all foreigners.

Those detainees were fined 165 reals(76 U.S. dollars). About 20 of them were charged with drug possession. Some were told to leave the country within eight days for having expired visas, police said.

Prostitution is legal in Brazil, but sexual tourism promoters can be charged.

Natal has witnessed several similar police raids in recent months. In one operation, police arrested six Italians for owning prostitution houses targeting tourists. Enditem

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