Police raided the Sondo Bon Beauty Care Salon on Monday night following reports that a group of people were conducting a prostitution ring inside the salon.
Police raided the salon at 8:00pm on Monday night and arrested three Thai women and two Maldivian men.
According to police, the Thai nationals were aged 21, 24 and 36 and the Maldivian men arrested were aged 30. The landlord was 65 years-old.
Police obtained a search warrant from the court and discovered items used for sexual purposes, as well as MVR 68,000 (US$4415) and US$200 in cash.
Police said it was the second time police had to close the business. According to police, the same business was closed during an operation police conducted on May 2.
Those arrested were brought before the court which extended the detention period of the Thai nationals and the landlord to 15 days. The other men were sentenced to 10 days in custody.
Previously, the Islamic Ministry claimed police had confiscated MVR 63,000 and US$2,640 allegedly obtained through prostitution.
In the most recent salon raided, police discovered materials used for sexual activities, as well as controlled drugs, US$2000 in forged currency, a large amount of money suspected to have been gained through prostitution, five bottles of unspecified alcohol, and a further three empty bottles.
Shutting down spas and massage parlors doubling as brothels was a key demand of a ‘mega protest’ on December 23 organised by eight political parties and religious NGOs to ‘Defend Islam’ against the allegedly liberal policies of the ousted Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) government.
Adhaalath Party President Sheikh Imran Abdulla claimed during the December 23 demonstration that there were over 60 brothels operating in Male’ alone, double the number of mosques in the capital.