Two men and a woman were today cleared of running a brothel after the court ruled that a dancer dancing topless in front of one client in a private room could not be considered to be an immoral act.

Paul Attard, Andra Iaona Togoi and Gary Camilleri, who run Club Paradiso in Sliema, were acquitted of running a brothel and of other charges related to living off the earnings of prostitution after ruling that the prosecution had failed to prove its case.

The court heard how the police were conducting random checks in various clubs on February 9, 2012, when they found a woman dancing topless in a back room in the presence of a client. The dancer, who was not called to testify, told the police the man, who was drunk, had removed her bra. Although this was not permitted according to the club's rules, she continued to perform.

Handing down her judgment, Magistrate Claire Stafrace Zammit noted that there was no legal definition of what constituted immoral acts.

"Can a dancer dancing topless in a private room even though in front of one customer be interpreted to constitute an immoral act? By analogy, the court finds more obscene and immoral most television programmes and films readily available and viewable by younger generations that portray the female figure and body in a more obscene way than in the case under examination," the magistrate said.

She said the prosecution did not prove that the club was used either solely or partly for the purposes of prostitution or for immoral acts. She therefore cleared the accused of all the charges brought against them.

Lawyers Giannella De Marco, Gianluca Caruana Curran and Shazoo Ghaznavi appeared for the accused.

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