2 Dec 2023

Wellington woman sentenced after receiving money from teen daughter’s prostitution

1:09 pm on 2 December 2023

By Ethan Griffiths* of Open Justice by NZ Herald

The mother was sentenced in the Wellington District Court to 15 months of intensive supervision. Photo: RNZ / Richard Tindiller

Warning: This story details sexual offending and may be distressing.

A mother who said prostitution was "natural for a girl's body" took $50 from a man in exchange for him to have sex with her 16-year-old daughter.

Yesterday, that mother, a Wellington woman in her 40s, was sentenced in the Wellington District Court to 15 months of intensive supervision for the criminal act.

In November 2021, the woman, who has name suppression, asked her daughter if she would have sex with a man.

She encouraged and persuaded the teenager to do it, according to the summary of facts.

"You shouldn't be scared off [sic] this, this is natural for a girl's body. Just do it, I love you," the mother told her.

The teen then went to a Newtown property and had sex with the man as her mother waited outside.

She was paid $50 by the man, which she later handed to her mother.

Police charged the woman with receiving earnings from a person under 18 - a charge contained in the Prostitution Reform Act. A second charge, of dealing in a person under 18, was withdrawn.

At the sentencing hearing, Judge Ian Mill said a report outlined the mother's difficult upbringing.

"You could've been [your daughter] in a way, as a younger person. I have a cultural report which makes for very sad reading," he said while adding it should not be taken as a justification for the crime.

"Intensive supervision is recommended, it's not a case where you should go to prison or have a punitive sentence."

He said he hoped the woman and her daughter could repair their relationship.

Judge Mill sentenced the woman to 15 months of intensive supervision, an outcome supported by the woman's lawyer and the Crown.

An application to suppress her name was also agreed.

* Ethan Griffiths covers crime and justice stories nationwide for Open Justice. He joined NZME in 2020, previously working as a regional reporter in Whanganui and South Taranaki.

- This story was first published by the New Zealand Herald.

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