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Tollywood prostitution racket gets murkier as 3 actresses questioned, fake letter heads used to invite stars

International Business Times (IN) logo International Business Times (IN) 18-06-2018 Vanilla Sharma

Sex worker © VALERY HACHE/AFP/Getty Images Sex worker The Tollywood prostitution racket that was busted in Chigaco, Illinois, seems to be getting murkier by the day. After two top actresses in the south film industry were named in the scandal, the police reportedly questioned three actresses on their suspected involvement in the matter for over six hours at an international airport in the US.

The police investigating the case pulled out the names of all the actresses suspected to be involved and called three of them for questioning. The actresses were asked why they were in the US and asked to prove their purpose of visit. The three were let go after the officials were convinced that they were in the US for a legitimate event.

"After the arrest of the couple - film producer Mogudumidi Kishan and his wife Chandra - operating a prostitution racket, the US police recovered the names and details of all Tollywood actresses who were in touch with them," a source told the Deccan Chronicle.

"When they found these three actresses on the list - they were in touch with the couple and had exchanged many messages/mails and were frequent travellers to the US - the authorities called them in for questioning for nearly six hours."

While the three actresses haven't been named yet, DC reported that one of them is a known name in Telugu and Tamil films, while another actress recently made news for her relationship with an actor from a respected film family. The third actress is said to be a popular name in the Kannada film industry and has also done a few Telugu movies.

Kishan Modugumudi and his wife Chandra, the Indian couple running the racket, remain in police custody and have reportedly failed to attain a bail. The duo is said to have invited several young actresses to the US on the pretext of film events and instead pushed them into prostitution.

The couple was arrested in Washington on April 28 and the federal agents of Homeland Security Investigations filed a 42-page criminal complaint against them.

Law enforcement officials have revealed more details on how the couple operated the racket in the US and said that the duo often used fake letterheads of various Telugu associations in the US to invite these actresses to the country.

An affidavit filed says that one of the victims had received an invite from the Telugu Association of Southern California (TASC) last year. However, TASC denied sending any letter to the actress.

The officials also probed the North America Telugu Society (NATS) and they too said that too said that they hadn't invited any actress and there was no conference in Illinois in 2017. The officials also found letterheads of the American Telugu Association.

How The Racket Functioned

The couple reportedly lured young actresses from Tollywood to the US on the pretext of events but instead advertised them for sex work across the country. The duo then booked air tickets for these actresses and housed them in hotels and dingy apartments and reportedly charged their clients about $3,000 for each actress.

"The accused would take the victims to Telugu and other Indian conferences held across the US to identify potential customers who would pay them to engage in commercial s**," TOI quoted the complaint.

The couple even kept a detailed account of all the clients and victims and Chandra reportedly also made note of the sexual acts performed by each actor and the exact amount of money paid and received.

If that wasn't enough, the couple also threatened the victims and warned them against approaching the police. Modugumudi told one of the victims that "it would be nothing for him to harm her if she talked to the police about him because she is small and unknown, not a big actress," the complaint said, according to the Chicago Tribune. "(He) further stated he had a copy of her passport with her family's name and address in it."

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