TWO men who forced a vulnerable child prostitute back on the streets night after night made an estimated £15,000 from their evil trade, a judge has heard.
But Thomas Entwistle and Martin Cantle, who are now both serving 11 year prison sentences, blew their ill-gotten gains on expensive clothes, food and other girls, and have nothing left.
Entwistle, 26, of Dog Lane, Napton, and Cantle, 24, of Oldbourne Road, Coventry, had been found guilty in February of controlling a child prostitute and supplying her with cocaine.
After jailing them following the trial at Warwick Crown Court, Judge Andrew Lockhart QC adjourned a hearing under the Proceeds of Crime Act for an investigation into their finances.
At the resumed hearing, with Entwistle in the dock and Cantle appearing via a video link from HMP Long Lartin, prosecutor Paul Prior said the relevant period for assessing their benefit from the girl’s prostitution was from mid-April to mid-July 2014.
“A benefit of £15,000 has been assessed, on the basis of an average earning of £250 a night, and based on a five-day week over the course of that three months.”
But Mr Prior said neither man, who the jury heard had blown the money they took from the girl on clothes, food and other girls, had any available assets.
So Judge Lockhart ruled they had each had a benefit of £7,500 – and ordered that a nominal £1 should be confiscated from each of them, with one day in prison in default.
By making such a nominal order under the Proceeds of Crime Act, it means further sums can be seized from them if they have any assets in the future.
Robery Underwood, prosecuting during the trial, had said the girl was from the Leamington area but had been in foster care from which she had absconded, sometimes ending up sleeping in derelict buildings and taking alcohol and drugs.
He said Entwistle and Cantle preyed on her, groomed her, coerced her and controlled her.
“They were her pimps and helped themselves to the money she earned out on the streets as a sex worker. She was then 17, and in the eyes of the law still a child.”
They took her to the Hillfields area of Coventry to work as a prostitute and began demanding she worked ever-longer hours on the street, sometimes from 6pm to 6am.
“Thereafter collecting her and taking part or all of the money she had earned, often in excess of £400 a night, and plying her with cocaine to make her vulnerable to their campaign.”
But Mr Underwood said the girl ‘finally built up the courage’ to go to the police, describing Cantle as the ‘puppet-master’ who had first raised the idea of her prostituting herself when they were short of money, immediately supported by Entwistle.
Sentencing Entwistle and Cantle, Judge Lockhart had said although the girl may have seemed street-wise, she was ‘in every sense vulnerable.’
“You two controlled her life in every sense. Night after night you two forced her out on the street in the highly dangerous area of Hillfields to work as a prostitute.
“You two treated her as your property. No person has a right to treat another human being in that way.”