The Saudi men confessed to having paid MAD 1,500 each to spend the night with prostitutes.
Rabat – Moroccan police arrested 11 individuals, including four Saudi nationals, in Tangier, on Sunday, January 5. Preliminary investigations indicate that the suspects are allegedly involved in a prostitution network.
Police made the arrests on Sunday morning, after raiding several residential apartments in Malabata, northeastern Tangier.
The suspects included prostitutes, procurers who rent the apartments, a doorman, and four Saudi clients.
The Saudi men confessed to having paid MAD 1,500 each to spend the night with the sex workers.
Authorities transferred the suspects to the public prosecutor’s office awaiting further investigation.
It is an open secret that many wealthy men from the Gulf states view Morocco as a destination for sex tourism. In September 2018, Marrakech was shaken by a prostitution scandal when police arrested an Emirati singer for allegedly soliciting prostitutes.
The singer was accompanied by 11 Emirati and Saudi men and about 30 Moroccan girls in a villa in the Nakhil district, central Marrakech.
While there are no more recent statistics from the Ministry of Health about prostitution in Morocco, a survey conducted in four major Moroccan cities in 2011 revealed that over 19,000 women work as prostitutes.
The study, carried out by the ministry in Rabat, Fez, Agadir, and Tangier, revealed that the majority of the women resorted to prostitution because of social or economic problems.
The report also notes that between 62 and 73% of prostitutes have either divorced or lost their husbands before the age of 24, while 2% are married.
However, UNAIDS, the UN-agency for the fight against HIV and AIDS notes that there are around 72,000 sex workers in Morocco, as of 2018.