Police have come to the conclusion that they cannot legally use the names, e-mails and phone numbers culled by the group Big Sister in a sting operation used to attract men looking for prostitutes.
Last week, a group calling itself Big Sister held a press conference at Iðnó, describing themselves as an underground operation waging war against prostitution. To do so, they placed advertisements on popular dating sites Einkamál and Rauða Torgið, and in the newspaper Fréttablaðið. In all, the women collected 56 full names, 117 phone numbers and some e-mail addresses, all of which they handed over to the police.
Friðrik Smári Björgvinsson, the supervisor of the investigations department of the capital area police, said at the time, “I am of the opinion that it is never good when civilians take the law into their own hands. But I welcome the fact that people are showing this issue attention, and trying to stem the demand for sex services. But people need to do it in the right way, and the right parties need to conduct the investigations.”
Today, assistant chief of police and prosecuting attorney Jón H. B. Snorrason confirmed that the evidence Big Sister gathered cannot be used to launch an investigation or make an arrest, but it will be kept on file.
The method itself – less politely known as entrapment – was also employed by the Icelandic television show Kompás in 2007, when they created an Icelandic version of To Catch A Predator. All of the men arrested as a result of the Kompás show were acquitted, as the evidence gained as a result of the entrapment was deemed inadmissible.