Pretending to be a paedophile1: June 7th Girls often have to spend a long time recovering from their ordeal. Getting fussy in me old age. I imagine him back at his hotel, posting something on Facebook about his disturbing encounter with some Australian paedophiles. Seeing myself through his eyes, a little part of me died. Nothing can really prepare you for the intense discomfort you feel when someone thinks you want to have sex with a child.
Tony has the uncomfortable task of secretly looking for very young sex workers in Manila. In order to find them, he needs to enter a world most of us would prefer not to know about — a world in which kids are for sale. Tony has invited me to watch him and his team at work, which is how I come to be in Manila tonight, freaking out a friendly backpacker.
SBS In the bars we visit, the music is loud, the drinks expensive, and the women bored. Prostitution is illegal in the Philippines , but largely tolerated — sex workers under the age of 18, however, are automatically considered trafficking victims, and their pimps can be jailed for life. Damien says that in order to find children, you sometimes need to access a shadowy underground, by making your forbidden desires known to the pimps, prostitutes and other patrons.
The work involves acting like a regular western customer to others in the bar, before trying to build the trust of the children he has paid for. I like really young girls. Maybe you have a cell phone? I have a friend who is their mamasan. The Philippines National Police are grateful for any help — there are only a handful of officers in their anti-trafficking unit, which relies on support from NGOs like Destiny Rescue and World Vision to do its work.
At first glance, Tony might not seem cut out for this kind of work. Among his staff are a plumber and a professional drummer — Destiny Rescue is a motley crew of mostly volunteers, driven by their social conscience and religious faith. After their rescue, children spend time in shelters as part of a rehabilitation program.
I felt awkward even walking into a brothel. I was blown away. To the bouncers or the mamasan, you want to look like a normal customer. Amos Roberts is a journalist for Dateline. Follow him on Twitter: Should Australia introduce a public sex offenders register?
But do we want this to be a reality in Australia? Currently our sex offenders register is closed to the government - so should it be made public?