Showing posts with label Prostitution. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Prostitution. Show all posts

January 11, 2015

Life for man Convicted of killing a “gay John” after not paying for sex 2012 (India)



                                                                          


Mangaluru,India: Mangaluro is a tourist prosperous city on the mid-east coast of India. The whole eastern size borders the sea on a deep port in which ships bring a healthy tourist trade. It has an exciting night life in comparison to other big cities in India and it has its gay, straight men and women that make a living by selling sex to the tourists coming in by ship. 
 The men of Mangaluro

The first additional district and sessions court here has convicted an accused in a case relating to the murder of a man who failed to pay Rs 100 as agreed after luring him for gay sex. After hearing arguments on the quantum of punishment on Friday June 9, the judge sentenced the accused to life imprisonment.

Rajesh alias Rathish alias Raja (26), residing in Leela Compound, Kunjathbail Devinagara in the city has been held guilty of the murder charge. He had been charged with the murder of Sundara Poojary from Kujuma Gadde in Kolya, near Ullal Someshwar on January 20, 2012. The judgment was delivered on Tuesday January 6.
 Gay pride in Mangaluru
Sundar Poojary, who had left his home on January 20, 2012 for bringing vegetables from Central Market in the city, had gone missing under mysterious circumstances. Later, the body of a male, who was murdered by tightening a banian around his neck, was found from a deserted well near Dobhi Ghat, Raiklway Gate, Old Kent Road, on January 28 the same year. The police concluded the body to be belonging to Sundar Poojary after comparing details.
The police who undertook investigation, arrested the accused on February 5, 2012. inspector of Pandeshwar station, Tolakchandra, who registered the case and conducted investigation, filed charge sheet in the court.

First additional district and sessions judge, B K Nayak, after examining witnesses and verifying evidences, found Rajesh guilty, through a judgment delivered on January 6. The quantum of sentence ordered on Friday are rigorous life imprisonment for murder apart from fine of Rs 10,000. In case of failure to pay fine, imprisonment of one additional year will accrue. For engaging in unnatural sex, five years rigorous imprisonment and fine of Rs 2,000 have been imposed. In case of failure to pay this fine, the guilty will have to remain inside jail for an additional term of six months. For looting, one year rigorous imprisonment and fine of Rs 1,000 have been prescribed. For destruction of evidence by way of tossing the body into well, two years rigorous imprisonment has been decided.

It is said that Sundar Poojary, who bought vegetables from a vendor in Central Market and kept his bag there, enticed Rajesh to have sex with him, by promising to pay Rs 100. After using Rajesh for gratifying his sexual urge among a thicket at Dhobi Ghat area, Sundar Poojary failed to pay the promised sum. Angered by this betrayal, Rajesh pushed Sundar Poojary down, suffocated him by tying an old banian lying nearby around his neck, and then tossing the lifeless body into a deserted well nearby. Rajesh had also collected cellphone, a ladies watch, and Rs 20 found on the body of Sundar before leaving for home.
The judge relied on recovery of above stolen items from Rajesh’s possession, and the statement of a railway contract worker named Papachchan, who stated that he had seen both the above walking by the railway tracks near Dhobi Ghat that day, and that only Rajesh had returned later, as sufficient to prove guilt of the accused.

Daijiworld Media Network - Mangaluru (SP)

April 27, 2014

KKK former Clan Leader Caught with Black Hooker


I found this piece of Say what?? information on  by KFOR-TV and A. Edwards. Actually it should not surprise anyone with a common sense mind that any extremist be political, racist, homophobe-hater or religious not all of what they say is true because in most cases is an impossibility. They preach to their crowds assuming the posture of know it all and can do it all if you just will support them.. One more case as we know the KKK is in no way better nor worse to any extremist preaching standards they find impossible to meet themselves. So they hide it. It is so much fun when it’s get found out particularly when the pants are down and the person who they hate is got the sexual whip making them skirmish like a pig.  


73-year-old Frazier Glenn Miller, also known as Frazier Glenn Cross, Glenn Miller and Glenn Cross,
73-year-old Frazier Glenn Miller, also known as Frazier Glenn Cross, Glenn Miller and Glenn Cross,
RALEIGH, N.C. – The former Ku Klux Klan leader charged with killing three people at Kansas City Jewish centers was caught with an African American, cross-dressing prostitute back in the 1980s.
North Carolina’s WGHPreported Raleigh police caught Glenn Miller in the backseat of a car, engaged in a sex act with a black male prostitute who was dressed as a woman.
WTVD said it found this information when researching Miller’s past in the area.
According to WGHP, officials said Miller wasn’t charged for the incident likely because the government was pursuing a much larger case against him.
Miller is currently facing charges for killing a boy and his grandfather, who was a doctor in Duncan, Oklahoma, outside of a Jewish community center weeks ago.
He also allegedly killed a woman at a Jewish assisted living center.
WTVD reported he is a former North Carolina resident who rose to lead a local chapter of the KKK which later became known as the White Patriot Party.
According to the report, Miller tried to secure the Democratic Party nomination for North Carolina governor in 1984.
Then in 1986, Miller attempted to get the Republican nomination for a North Carolina Senate seat.
Miller has quite a past including declaring war on “blacks and Jews” and a plan to overthrow the government.
He was wanted by the U.S. Marshals and was captured by federal agents after a Missouri standoff in 1987.
Miller served time and gave authorities valuable information in other cases.
He was eventually released with a new identity as part of the witness protection program.
MORE: Read the full story from WTVD
A 1987 United States Marshals Service "wanted" poster shows Frazier Glenn Miller. (United States Marshals Service via ABC News)
A 1987 United States Marshals Service “wanted” poster shows Frazier Glenn Miller. (United States Marshals Service via ABC News)

April 12, 2014

The Why Puerto Rico Rico is Legalizing Pot and Prostitution

                                                                        
                                                                               




Slash the number of public holidays by two-thirds. Eliminate dozens of government agencies. Legalize marijuana and prostitution.
From the intriguing to the impossible, there is no shortage of ideas for fixing Puerto Rico's ailing economy as the government tries to dig out from a whopping $70 billion in public debt and bring back economic growth.
The ideas have come from legislators, entrepreneurs and even members of the public, who have submitted ideas via a government-sponsored website. Of the 369 ideas sent in by the public, 156 have been accepted by a government committee for consideration, including the suggestions to legalize marijuana and prostitution, and to limit how long people can live in subsidized housing.
But all the ideas require further government approval, either with a legislative vote, or an administrative nod from the governor, agency or department. More dramatic ideas, such as legalization of marijuana or prostitution, would require public hearings, legislative approval and the governor's signature.
And prospects for approval of the various suggestions are decidedly mixed.
The governor, for example, is expected to sign a bill approved by lawmakers to release certain elderly prisoners, but not a suggestion floated by a member of the public to charge inmates for their room and board.
Puerto Rico, in dire straits following eight years of recession, has remained receptive as it debates hundreds of ideas: "We are studying all alternatives and all possibilities," said Sen. Maria Teresa Gonzalez, a member of the governor's party who has come under fire for submitting a bill that would reduce the number of holidays for public employees to six.
The island currently celebrates 20 holidays a year, double those observed in the U.S. Many people have bristled at the proposal to scrap some of the additional extra days off, some of which commemorate various historic Puerto Rican leaders. But Gonzalez said the excessive number of holidays costs the government about $500 million a year in lost productivity and interruptions in service, among other things.
"Change always brings about inconveniences," she said. "I'm convinced that before we talk about something as dramatic and disastrous as layoffs, we have to consider other ideas."
Many suggestions have come as Gov. Alejandro Garcia Padilla prepares to submit the first balanced budget in decades, having promised U.S. investors and credit agencies that he will eliminate an $820 million deficit. The governor has not detailed his cutbacks, prompting fears of layoffs, tax increases and cuts to public service.
Opposition legislator Rep. Ricardo Llerandi Cruz has proposed eliminating 41 government agencies, saying it would save $160 million alone in administrative costs. He said the government has many agencies performing the same functions, noting that there's a Department of Natural Resources, which protects, develops and manages the island's environmental resources, and an Administration of Natural Resources, a division within the department with responsibilities that include overseeing projects such as cleanup efforts.
"Puerto Rico is facing the worst fiscal crisis in all of its history," Cruz said. "We need to refocus or revisit governmental priorities to face these problems."
A bill in the legislature also would cap the salaries of mayors, but legislators have been debating the issue for a year as mayors continue to give themselves raises. The full-time mayor of the western town of Maricao, for example, oversees the island's second-least populated municipality with some 6,200 people and currently earns $78,000 a year, nearly double of what he earned the previous year. If the bill is approved, the mayor would earn a base salary of roughly $54,000 a year.
Manuel Lugo, an attorney who lives in the coastal town of Aguadilla, is among those who submitted the highest number of ideas on the government's website. But despite having nine of 17 ideas approved, he doesn't believe the government will take action on any of them.
"It is very difficult to change the inertia of this island," said Lugo, 43, who recently closed his office because of economic problems and is contemplating a move to Texas. "There has been no economic plan for decades. What they do here is repair and patch holes. That's not how you run a country."
Yanira Hernandez, a governor spokeswoman, said Garcia will detail how he plans to balance the budget in a special televised address in late April. The budget must be approved before June 30.
While many are concerned about what cuts will be made to balance the budget, economist Gustavo Velez said extreme measures won't be necessary if the government increases revenues and consolidates state agencies. Puerto Rico could generate $300 million more a year if it increases its capture rate on tax revenues from 56 to 75 percent, he said. The government also could suspend salary increases, Velez added.
"Puerto Rico cannot keep operating on recurring deficits," he said, noting it is unconstitutional. "We have to return to balanced budgets as the norm. Politicians have to embrace that reality."
The government also has considered tapping into the island's underground economy, estimated by some experts at $20 billion a year, representing roughly 40 percent of overall consumption.
Puerto Ricans are increasingly seeking new ways to generate money, with some opening food trucks or hunting caimans to sell the meat as shish kebabs or fried snacks.
But an estimated 450,000 people have moved to the U.S. mainland in search of new jobs and a more affordable cost of living in the past decade.
Brunilda Cintron, 56, left the island in 2001 and now lives in Kissimmee, Florida. But her daughter and mother still live in Puerto Rico, and she worries about their future.
"The government has to make some drastic decisions that will adversely affect people," Cintron said, adding that she thinks her family will soon join her in the U.S. mainland. “I don't think they're going to have a choice."
The Associated Press

March 30, 2014

UK: Tory Mark Menzies Resigned After Revelations Came About His Male Brazilian Prostitutes



                                                                                



Tory MP Mark Menzies resigned as a ministerial aide last night after claims that he asked a Brazilian rent boy he was paying for sex to supply illegal drugs.
Mr Menzies was accused by Rogerio Santos of asking him to get hold of methedrone, a class-B drug dubbed the poor man’s cocaine, reports said.
Mr Santos, whom the MP is said to have met on a gay escort website, also claimed Mr Menzies, 42, paid for his services 18 months ago before showing him around Parliament.
Allegations: MP Mark Menzies, pictured with TV presenters Naomi Wilksinson and Dermot O'Leary, has quit
Allegations: MP Mark Menzies, pictured with TV presenters Naomi Wilksinson and Dermot O'Leary, has quit
Last night, Mr Menzies, a parliamentary aide (PPS) to International Development Minister Alan Duncan, said he was standing down from his post to fight ‘untrue’ allegations.
He said: ‘I have decided to resign as a PPS after a series of allegations were made against me in a Sunday newspaper. A number of these allegations are not true and I look forward to setting the record straight in due course.’
  
Mr Menzies worked for Alan Duncan, pictured
In reports last night, Mr Santos, said to be 19, claimed the Tory MP had paid him to have sex and asked him to obtain methedrone.
Texts on the Brazilian’s mobile phone apparently revealed messages asking him for full details about the quality of the drug and how much it cost.
Mr Santos, who lives in the Brazilian city Sao Paulo, said: ‘I have been having sex with a Conservative MP for money. Mark asked me to buy methedrone. I have personal messages of him talking to me about drugs.’
Mr Santos also reportedly claimed he had overstayed on his student visa and was in the UK illegally, although it is understood Mr Menzies was unaware of his immigration status.
The Brazilian maintained he was taken around Parliament by the MP and still has a ‘visitor’s permit’ but there was no suggestion Mr Menzies had broken any Commons rules.
Last night, a Tory source said the MP would be ‘getting help with personal issues’ in the wake of the claims.
Roman Catholic Mr Menzies, who is single, entered the Commons at the last General Election as the MP for Fylde in Lancashire. He was brought up by his mother on the west coast of Scotland. His father, who was in the Merchant Navy, died before he was born.
Mr Menzies won an assisted place at an independent school before studying at Glasgow University, and he joined Marks & Spencer as a trainee in 1994.
According to his website, he has been a Conservative Party member since he was 16 and in 2008 was selected to fight Fylde, a rock-solid Tory seat.
He won with a comfortable majority at the 2010 Election and quickly became an aide to Energy Minister Charles Hendry.
In the 2012 reshuffle, he became PPS to Housing Minister Mark Prisk, and last autumn he was moved again to become PPS to International Development Minister Alan Duncan.
Mr Duncan is the first openly gay Conservative MP.
Mr Menzies told the Commons last year that he had intended to abstain on the historic vote to legalise same-sex marriages but then voted in favour.
‘I came here to abstain, but I have listened to the debate like I have listened to no other, and it is now my intention not to abstain, but to support the Bill,’ he said.

 
By BRENDAN CARLIN, MAIL ON SUNDAY POLITICAL REPORTER
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/n

January 12, 2013

Anti Gay Activist Lawyer Busted for Selling Her 14 yr old Daughter


Lawyer will face 25 years in prison for forcing her 14-year-old daughter to have sex with two men on camera
Anti-gay lawyer Lisa Biron, 43, faces 25 years in prison for forcing her 14-year-old daughter to have sex with two men.
An anti-gay lawyer who videotaped her own daughter having sex with two men was found guilty of filming and possessing child porn yesterday (11 January).
Lisa Biron, 43, from New Hampshire, US, faces a minimum sentence of 25 years in prison.
The attorney, associated with reactionary Christian anti-gay firm Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), was arrested by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in November last year.
She was accused of eight felony counts involving the videotaping of men having sex with her 14-year-old child, taking a teenage girl to Canada and forcing her to engage in sex on Camera.
Biron also allegedly made a phone video of her having sex with her daughter as well.
The ADF calls itself a ‘servant ministry’ that issue dire warnings about the ‘homosexual agenda’, and offers a book by its president Alan Sears and senior director Craig Osten.
In the book, the authors claim the ‘homosexual agenda’ will destroy religious liberty and free speech, and say homosexuality and pedophilia is ‘intrinsically linked’.
According to the Southern Law Poverty Center, the ADF removed all mentions of her from its website and Facebook page, and said Biron was never an employee.
In March of 2011, she was listed by the ADF as an ‘Allied Attorney Success Story’.
The sentencing hearing for Biron is set for 22 April, where she will be charged with a minimum of 10 years in prison on the transportation charge and 15 years in prison on each of the exploitation of children charges.

November 13, 2012

The Psychology of Prostitution



The sex trade includes pornography, erotic dance, phone sex, and probably some things I’ve never heard of.  But our focus today is prostitution in many but not all of its varieties.   Prostitution mainly involves men paying women for sex.  There are a lot of male and transsexual prostitutes too.  And there are some female customers, too.  But in the overwhelming majority of cases prostitutes, male or female, service the sexual desires of men.
            I think it's a mistake to suppose that all customers of prostitutes are pathetic or perverse.  Normal guys with normal sexual desires frequent prostitutes too.  Prostitution is a complex, multi-faceted thing.  We can’t lump all forms of it together, if we’re going to justice to the many moral and legal issues the sex trade raises.
            The legal status is pretty settled, at least in the US.  Thanks in part to the women’s movement, it’s been against the law since the early 20th Century, except for a few counties in Nevada.
            But it is legal in a lot of countries -- some of which might surprise you. Canada, most of Central and South America, India, and Turkey.  And some which might not surprise you -- Australia and most of Western Europe.
            Aside from the issue of legality, prostitutes work under lots of different social and economic conditions.  Some walk the streets, plying their trade in cars or back alleys.  Others work in brothels or fancy hotels.  Some prostitutes live trick to trick,  hour to hour.  Others have secretaries, appointment books, and well-heeled regulars.
           One position on prostitution is that none of this really makes a moral difference. The institution of prostituion is wrong, evil even, a gruesome reminder of the second-class status that women have traditionally had and still suffer from around the world.  After all,   prostitutes are often coerced into the trade.  Some girls end up as prostitutes before they’re even old enough to know what’s happening.   Others are sold into prostitution by their own families.  Many are lured into it under false pretenses, these days, in Europe and in America, often as part of some illegal immigration scheme.  And there is the fact that many prostitutes work for pimps, who rake in the profits, while the sex workers do the dirty and often dangerous work.
            But  suppose prostitutes were guaranteed a fair wage, decent working conditions, and a real measure of autonomy?  Would prostitution be immoral, under these circumstances?
            Some would argue that it would still be immoral.  Even if the working conditions are improved,  it is inherently degrading to sell your body.  Against this one might argue that as long as no one is being abused or manipulated, or coerned, so it is basically a fair transaction, selling sexual labor is no more degrading than selling many kinds of manual or even intellectual labor.
            Many feminists --- but not all ---  argue that prostitution is intrinsically wrong, because it debases and dehumanizes women.  It turns them into objects. It is intrinsically different from other forms of manual and intellectual labor.
            But we treat each other as objects in many situations.  Suppose I stop and ask you for directions.  I’m interested in you for one reason and one reason only.  You may as well be a GPS as far as I’m concerned.
            One might well suppose that sex is different.  It should be a two way street.  Prostitution makes it a one-way street.  It turns what should be intimate and mutual into something cold and mechanical.
            But doesn’t this view over-romanticize and idealize non-commercial sex?  Certainly, at its best, consensual non-commercial sex may be a two-way street, intimate, mutual, and rewarding in spiritual ways to both parties.  But lots of sex falls short of this, even when no money is involved. Guys get sex all the time by convincing women that they care.  And there are plenty of women who’ll sleep with a guy just because he’s rich or famous.  One might argue that compared to other parts of the realm of non-ideal sex,  at least the sex trade is up front and honest.
             So we have two positions.  One holds that prostitution is inherently degrading and of necessity involves objectionable objectification, and so is wrong, even if conducted in a way that is safe for and non-exploitative of the prostitute.  The other position holds that if conducted in this way, prostitution could be a fair commercial transaction that preserves the dignity of both seller and purchases of sexual favors.  We should have a lively discussion.
(Posted by JP)

September 19, 2012

In South Korea Now, The Lady Pays for the Man$

Host bar in Seoul



South Korea's rapid economic development has meant some startling changes within its conservative social structure, including the rise of so-called host bars, where wealthy women pay the equivalent of thousands of dollars for male company.
In the dim light of an underground room, a dozen perfectly groomed young men kneel in rows, calling out their names.
Muscular, with shiny boy-band hairstyles, they cram side by side into the narrow space, waiting for us to make our choice. Outside in the corridor, more of their colleagues are arriving for another night at work. It is 2am, and we are their first customers.
Hidden beneath the pavements of Seoul's ritziest postcode, Gangnam, the men at Bar 123 are part of a growing industry, which grew out of the long traditions of Japanese geisha and Korea's kisaeng houses but with one crucial difference - the customers here are all women.
Known as "host bars", these all-night drinking rooms offer female customers the chance to select and pay for male companions, sometimes at a cost of thousands of pounds a night.
One of the women I meet at Bar 123 is Minkyoung, a waitressing manager for a five-star hotel. She says she comes to host bars once or twice a month.
Minkyoung is very pretty and her clothes are immaculate. She does not look like someone who would need to pay for male company. But the allure of host bars can be subtle. Here, she says, she has more attention from her male companions, more choice and, crucially, more control.
"In regular bars the guys who drink with me have only one goal - to have a one-night stand. But I don't want that, so that's why I come here, I want to have fun," she says.
Hosts are hired by bars like this one to provide companionship and entertainment. Officially that means pouring drinks for their customers, talking and dancing with them, and singing karaoke.
Sex is not officially on offer in most host bars. That would be illegal but even Minkyoung seems happy to touch and flirt with her host, and the men here estimate that around half the customers want to pay for sex, either on or off the premises.
James has been working at Bar 123 for a couple of years. In Korean culture, he says, there is a lot of pride and negotiating a price for sex is never done explicitly. Instead, he tells me, it is all down to the host's own assessment.
"The guys here are pros - we know what we're doing," he says.
"After talking to a girl for an hour we basically know how much money she makes and what she does for a living. We've already analysed her personality and what she's willing to give.” 
James and other hosts say their customers include some of South Korea's elite, and that the money and perks on offer are unbelievable. One client James met, during his first week in the job, asked him to sign himself over to her for two years.
"She said 'let's make a contract. I've got this piece of paper and I've numbered it 1-5. Whatever you write down next to those numbers, I'll get you.'"
James says at the time he took it as a joke but since found out the same woman spent £60,000 ($97,000) on another host.
"If it happened now, I'd do it - I'd be thinking straight."
Ironically perhaps, host bars grew out of one of Korea's most entrenched and, some say, misogynist business traditions - the room salon. These are private drinking rooms where groups of men select, and are served by, attractive female hostesses.
It was the hostesses' need to let off steam after work, says veteran host Kim Dong-hee, that created the initial demand for host bars, with all-male staff.
"What these hostesses want is to [make us] do the same thing they had to do in their own workplace. These girls are forced to do things they don't want to do for money.
 "I think a lot of them are in pain, and a lot feel lonely. Simply put, they want to buy our time and our bodies.” Hostesses still make up a large percentage of the customers at host bars here, but at Bar 123, for example, up to 40% of the customers on a given night are now from other walks of life.
The reasons for that growing appeal are tied up in South Korea's rapid economic rise. Within 50 years, the country shifted from post-war devastation to OECD member.
But, according to Jasper Kim, head of the Asia-Pacific Global Research Group in Seoul, something important was lost along the way.
"I think that with all this fast growth comes fast change, and Koreans just don't know how to cope with it. Increasingly, capitalism is overtaking basic societal norms that you would expect a couple of decades ago."
Jasper Kim says South Korea's notoriously long working hours have left many Korean women feeling lonely, while the country's technical advance has left many people feeling detached.
"The human element of Korean society that existed before simply doesn't exist today. People are focused on technology, people are focused on their jobs, they aren't focused on human relations anymore.
"In many ways, Korean society today kind of reminds me of 1960s society in the US, where it's on the verge of some type of cultural revolution."
The grandfather of Seoul's host bar scene, Kim Dong-hee, agrees that many of the women who come to host bars are not paying for sex but for companionship, which is why he opened a new chain of freshly-marketed outlets aimed at the mainstream market - called Red Model Bars.
Red Model Bar hostsHosts at Red Model Bars cannot touch clients
"Men want to have visual pleasure and want to feel things, they're tactile. Women like to talk and to listen. And that's why I thought of opening a bar like this - a kind of dialogue bar."
Red Model Bars are different to traditional host bars in one key respect - there is a no-touching rule. Hosts sit on one side of the table, customers on the other, and no physical contact is allowed, and certainly no sex.
Perhaps as a result there is a lack of furtiveness among the people who work or drink here - the lights are low, the decor mainly dark red and the space is divided into discreet booths, but it is an open-plan room and hosts and customers are divided in each booth by a large table.
This new business model depends entirely on women paying the equivalent of hundreds or even thousands of dollars to talk to good-looking young men over a drink. Still, it seems to be working - three new branches are due to open this year.
 Sitting at a table at one end of the bar was one of their regular customers, a florist called Kim Nayu. She tells me she comes here every day to meet her favourite host and discuss issues she is having at work.
The price for this slice of male attention is $487-650 (£300-400) a day.
"Talking to friends would be cheaper" she admits, "but they don't listen as much. They're busy, and in a hurry to talk about themselves. Here, people will pay attention to me and they'll listen to me."
"I spend a lot of money but it's worth it for what I get emotionally. People pay to go to see a psychologist or psychiatrist, so it's similar but less stressful."
Nayu's favourite host Sung-il says it can be hard to keep his personal and professional life separate.
"Honestly I'd be lying if I say I haven't been tempted to take things further with some customers, because we're human, we're men, but there are rules."
One of his customers talked a lot to her husband about him and when the three of them met, Sung-il and the husband became close friends.
"No one hides - the workers don't hide that they work here, and customers can be open too."
This openness is posing a new kind of challenge to South Korean society, different from the sometimes seedy underworld of traditional host bars and their hinterland of male prostitution.
By offering women a "respectable" way to challenge traditional gender roles and flex their economic power, these new bars ask questions of Korean society that are becoming harder to ignore.
South Korea's rapid economic development has meant some startling changes within its conservative social structure, including the rise of so-called host bars, where wealthy women pay the equivalent of thousands of dollars for male company.
In the dim light of an underground room, a dozen perfectly groomed young men kneel in rows, calling out their names.
Muscular, with shiny boy-band hairstyles, they cram side by side into the narrow space, waiting for us to make our choice. Outside in the corridor, more of their colleagues are arriving for another night at work. It is 2am, and we are their first customers.
Hidden beneath the pavements of Seoul's ritziest postcode, Gangnam, the men at Bar 123 are part of a growing industry, which grew out of the long traditions of Japanese geisha and Korea's kisaeng houses but with one crucial difference - the customers here are all women.
Known as "host bars", these all-night drinking rooms offer female customers the chance to select and pay for male companions, sometimes at a cost of thousands of pounds a night.
One of the women I meet at Bar 123 is Minkyoung, a waitressing manager for a five-star hotel. She says she comes to host bars once or twice a month.
Minkyoung is very pretty and her clothes are immaculate. She does not look like someone who would need to pay for male company. But the allure of host bars can be subtle. Here, she says, she has more attention from her male companions, more choice and, crucially, more control.
"In regular bars the guys who drink with me have only one goal - to have a one-night stand. But I don't want that, so that's why I come here, I want to have fun," she says.
Hosts are hired by bars like this one to provide companionship and entertainment. Officially that means pouring drinks for their customers, talking and dancing with them, and singing karaoke.
Sex is not officially on offer in most host bars. That would be illegal but even Minkyoung seems happy to touch and flirt with her host, and the men here estimate that around half the customers want to pay for sex, either on or off the premises.
James has been working at Bar 123 for a couple of years. In Korean culture, he says, there is a lot of pride and negotiating a price for sex is never done explicitly. Instead, he tells me, it is all down to the host's own assessment.
"The guys here are pros - we know what we're doing," he says.
"After talking to a girl for an hour we basically know how much money she makes and what she does for a living. We've already analysed her personality and what she's willing to give."
 James and other hosts say their customers include some of South Korea's elite, and that the money and perks on offer are unbelievable. One client James met, during his first week in the job, asked him to sign himself over to her for two years.
"She said 'let's make a contract. I've got this piece of paper and I've numbered it 1-5. Whatever you write down next to those numbers, I'll get you.'"
James says at the time he took it as a joke but since found out the same woman spent £60,000 ($97,000) on another host.
"If it happened now, I'd do it - I'd be thinking straight."
Ironically perhaps, host bars grew out of one of Korea's most entrenched and, some say, misogynist business traditions - the room salon. These are private drinking rooms where groups of men select, and are served by, attractive female hostesses.
It was the hostesses' need to let off steam after work, says veteran host Kim Dong-hee, that created the initial demand for host bars, with all-male staff.
 "I think a lot of them are in pain, and a lot feel lonely. Simply put, they want to buy our time and our bodies."
"What these hostesses want is to [make us] do the same thing they had to do in their own workplace. These girls are forced to do things they don't want to do for money.
Hostesses still make up a large percentage of the customers at host bars here, but at Bar 123, for example, up to 40% of the customers on a given night are now from other walks of life.
The reasons for that growing appeal are tied up in South Korea's rapid economic rise. Within 50 years, the country shifted from post-war devastation to OECD member.
But, according to Jasper Kim, head of the Asia-Pacific Global Research Group in Seoul, something important was lost along the way.
"I think that with all this fast growth comes fast change, and Koreans just don't know how to cope with it. Increasingly, capitalism is overtaking basic societal norms that you would expect a couple of decades ago."
Jasper Kim says South Korea's notoriously long working hours have left many Korean women feeling lonely, while the country's technical advance has left many people feeling detached.
"The human element of Korean society that existed before simply doesn't exist today. People are focused on technology, people are focused on their jobs, they aren't focused on human relations anymore.
"In many ways, Korean society today kind of reminds me of 1960s society in the US, where it's on the verge of some type of cultural revolution."
The grandfather of Seoul's host bar scene, Kim Dong-hee, agrees that many of the women who come to host bars are not paying for sex but for companionship, which is why he opened a new chain of freshly-marketed outlets aimed at the mainstream market - called Red Model Bars.
Red Model Bar hostsHosts at Red Model Bars cannot touch clients
"Men want to have visual pleasure and want to feel things, they're tactile. Women like to talk and to listen. And that's why I thought of opening a bar like this - a kind of dialogue bar."
Red Model Bars are different to traditional host bars in one key respect - there is a no-touching rule. Hosts sit on one side of the table, customers on the other, and no physical contact is allowed, and certainly no sex.
Perhaps as a result there is a lack of furtiveness among the people who work or drink here - the lights are low, the decor mainly dark red and the space is divided into discreet booths, but it is an open-plan room and hosts and customers are divided in each booth by a large table.
This new business model depends entirely on women paying the equivalent of hundreds or even thousands of dollars to talk to good-looking young men over a drink. Still, it seems to be working - three new branches are due to open this year.
 Sitting at a table at one end of the bar was one of their regular customers, a florist called Kim Nayu. She tells me she comes here every day to meet her favourite host and discuss issues she is having at work.   
The price for this slice of male attention is $487-650 (£300-400) a day.
"Talking to friends would be cheaper" she admits, "but they don't listen as much. They're busy, and in a hurry to talk about themselves. Here, people will pay attention to me and they'll listen to me."
"I spend a lot of money but it's worth it for what I get emotionally. People pay to go to see a psychologist or psychiatrist, so it's similar but less stressful."
Nayu's favourite host Sung-il says it can be hard to keep his personal and professional life separate.
"Honestly I'd be lying if I say I haven't been tempted to take things further with some customers, because we're human, we're men, but there are rules."
One of his customers talked a lot to her husband about him and when the three of them met, Sung-il and the husband became close friends.
"No one hides - the workers don't hide that they work here, and customers can be open too."
This openness is posing a new kind of challenge to South Korean society, different from the sometimes seedy underworld of traditional host bars and their hinterland of male prostitution.
By offering women a "respectable" way to challenge traditional gender roles and flex their economic power, these new bars ask questions of Korean society that are becoming harder to ignore.


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