Twelve expats among 26 customers and clients arrested at Fetish Fashion

PUBLISHED : Monday, 13 August, 2001, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 13 August, 2001, 12:00am

Twenty-six people were arrested for taking part in a public sex performance early yesterday when undercover police raided a party at Fetish Fashion, the well-known Central sex shop.

Police said the 1am raid and arrests came after a five-month operation and were the first of their kind in Hong Kong. Those arrested by officers posing as customers were aged between 25 and 61 and included three women performers - a Thai, an American and a local Chinese aged in their 20s - 18 customers, and five Fetish Fashion staff.

Leather belts, wooden planks and ropes, believed to have been used in the sex shows were seized. Police said 12 expatriates, mostly men, were among those arrested, with four women among the customers.

A middle-aged expatriate woman police said was in charge of the shop was released on $3,000 police bail last night. The others were freed on bail ranging from $500 to $3,000.

Fetish Fashion, in the Merlin Building at 32-34 Cochrane Street, is a well-known sight to city workers who use the Central escalator. It sells products to cater for the needs of BDSM - bondage, domination and sado-masochism.

Central district operations officer Lau Tat-keung said: 'A special feature of the shop is that parties are being held from time to time to provide services known as BDSM. They are the first such performances we have come across.'

The shop charges a $350 entrance fee for its parties. Mr Lau said the shows had been going on for over a year.

All those arrested were ordered to report back to the police by the end of the month. Mr Lau said they were arrested for taking part in a public live sex performance, which carries a maximum penalty of one year in jail and a $25,000 fine.

The curtains of Fetish Fashion were drawn yesterday afternoon although a sign advertising 'play rooms available' was still on show. Before yesterday's raid, the shop's windows provided an intriguing glimpse of its goods and services, with a range of sex toys, including whips, and rubber and PVC clothing on display.

The shop, established in 1994, offers two 'play rooms' for hire. Its Web site says: 'The burgundy room has a rubber-lined voyeur box, leather rack with integral cage, whipping bench, Catherine wheel, hanging strap cage, body bags and lots more. The suspension system has seven points with hand mitts and foot suspension stirrups.

'The dungeon is a creation of rough-cast grey walls, wrought iron and slate flooring. It has a magnificent bondage chair with lower slave head cage for when it is used as a throne. Masks and hoods are integral to this piece.'