Report on the Queeriosity Palace raid (by TLF Share)

Published: October 13, 2010

A gay/bi establishment, an exclusive members-only all-male bath house called Queeriosity Palace along  FB Harrison in Pasay City, was raided at 1 am on September 24, 2010. Membership is given to men who are of legal age only, and upon entrance it requires the presentation of the club membership ID and another valid ID.

A raiding team of around 12 policemen, in plain clothes, barged into the bath house and announced that they are conducting a raid. They took the cash box, confiscated boxes of condoms and other paraphernalia, and arrested 105 clients for allegedly violating the Anti-Human Trafficking Law. They also arrested the staff members of the bath house.

They were all told to stay in the driveway of the precinct. The manager of the bath house, who was also arrested, narrated that when he asked the police for a search warrant, he was thumped on the head, punched in the stomach, and told not to ask questions. The police reportedly ordered the patrons to stay in the main lobby of the bath house while they searched the premises for ‘evidence’ like condoms. They took away the cash box and attempted to break the security deposit boxes where members keep their valuables, including wallets and cellphones.

Some of the condoms that were confiscated by the police were provided by the Global Fund through TLF Share, AIDS Society of the Philippines, and the Pasay City Health Department.

After searching the place, they told the clients and the staff members to board the five jeepneys that were parked outside the establishment. Everyone was brought to the Criminal Investigation Division of Pasay City, which is located inside the Pasay City Hall.

The policemen in the precinct were cooperative initially and allowed the community representative* who arrived in the precinct to talk to the manager. However, when asked about the details of the raid and the charges that would be filed against the arrested individuals, they became hostile. They asked for the representative’s ID and discovered that he is a congressional staffer of Akbayan. One of the policemen derisively said, ‘O, taga-Akbayan ka pala. Binoto ko pa naman kayo. Alam ko ang pinaglalaban ng Akbayan, pero bakit kayo pumapasok sa kalaswaan?’. (“So you’re from Akbayan. I voted for you. I know what Akbayan stands for,  but why are you into promiscuity?”)
They ignored the questions asked by the representative, refusing even to give their names. They all went to a room, apparently to confer among themselves.

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