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Last Updated: Wednesday, 23 July, 2003, 11:10 GMT 12:10 UK
Prostitutes living in fear
Pauline Stephen
Pauline Stephen "could pick and choose her clients"
A friend of a prostitute who is believed to have been murdered and dismembered in Liverpool has told how girls in the city's red light districts are living in fear.

Prostitutes are still working in the Everton area - just yards from St Domingo Vale where two bodies were found on Monday.

One victim was 19-year-old Hanane Parry, originally from Chester, while the other is 25-year-old mother-of-one Pauline Stephen, from Skelmersdale, Lancashire.

Mark Corner, 26, of Everton, was still being questioned on suspicion of murder by police on Wednesday.

On Wednesday morning, magistrates granted police an extra 36 hours to question Mr Corner.

Jo, a prostitute who worked with Pauline and knew her well, said her friend - who was known on the streets as Portia - was always safety conscious.

A woman's arms and legs have been cut off and found in a bin bag - there's nothing more frightening when you've got family and friends to think about
Jo, prostitute
She told BBC Radio Merseyside: "She could pick and choose the people she went with.

"She was a gorgeous looking girl, she really was gorgeous. She turned down more cars than she got in.

"She just literally made her money and she went back to where she lived in Skelmersdale. She never hung around more than she had to."

The 24-year-old, who has been a prostitute for eight years, added that girls on the streets were extremely scared, but she had carried on taking clients because she needed money for drugs.

The bodies were found in St Domingo Vale
The bodies were found in St Domingo Vale

She added: "A woman's arms and legs have been cut off and found in a bin bag - there's nothing more frightening when you've got family and friends to think about.

"But when you've got a drug habit to feed you take those risks, it's better than robbing people but at the same time you're putting your life at risk."

She added: "[Everyone is] very, very frightened. We're tending to turn down more cars than we're getting into, visualising that that's the person.

"You don't know who you're getting in the car with, you don't know whether that's the very last car you're going to get into."

Jo added violence from clients was an occupational hazard, saying: "I've been thrown out of a first floor window by a client in Kensington.

"I was very lucky not to have been killed. I've been raped, I've been strangled, but your drug habit's always there."


WATCH AND LISTEN
Jo talks to BBC Radio Merseyside
"It's better than robbing people but at the same time you're putting your life at risk"



SEE ALSO:
Body parts victim named
22 Jul 03  |  Merseyside
Man arrested in body parts hunt
21 Jul 03  |  Merseyside
Body parts found in alley
21 Jul 03  |  Merseyside


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