A PROSTITUTE has spoken of the life-threatening risks sex workers face every time they invite a client into their homes after anti kerb-crawling laws forced them off the streets.

One of around 32,000 sex workers operating in London, Anna has opened up to the Sun Online exclusively about her 18 years operating in the heart of Soho.

Her most traumatic experience remains the death of her friend Destiny Lauren, murdered by a client in 2009.

It was nightmarish, so horrible," said Anna, whose name has been changed to protect her identity.

"When he didn't have enough money to pay her he strangled her and left her half-naked in the bed, he tied her arms behind her back with stockings. Her brother found her like that."

A decade later, shocking parallels can be drawn between Destiny's murder and that of escort Christina Abbotts last year as figures reveal a rise in violence against sex workers.

Like Destiny, Christina was strangled by a client while in a private flat after being subjected to considerable violence.In December 2018, city banker Zahid Naseem was jailed for at least 19 years after battering the escort 13 times on the back of the head with a ceramic pestle and strangling her.

The 250,000-a-year workers hired sex workers for nearly a decade before murdering Ms Abbott while she was house-sitting for a friend in Crawley, West Sussex.

Christina and Destiny are two of around 180 sex workers to be murdered in Britain between 1990 and 2015. Other acts of violence against prostitutes can be harder to pin-point, with a 2014 survey showing that only five per cent of sex workers reported crimes against them.

Destiny's death has left a hole in Anna's life.

"I really miss her," she said. "We used to go clubbing together, we were good friends.

"She used to love go shopping. She was lovely, really friendly but also a quiet person.

"It was a shock for all that knew her, you never think something like the will happen."

In the year Destiny died, changes in legislation further penalised kerb-crawling as well as selling sex. The laws also made it easier for police to close premises where women were working together collectively.

Anna reacted to Destiny's death by making her own flat and place of work as safe as possible.

"Of course it made me scared but Im more careful now, Ive installed CCTV footage now and I make sure I know everyone in the building," said Anna, who says her 150 an hour rate ensures a "certain class" of client.

She added: "What happened is a one in a million tragedy but yes you never know who is coming to your flat.

Shockingly, stories such as Destiny's still happen in the UK with alarming regularity.

In December 2018, city banker Zahid Naseem was jailed for at least 19 years for murdering escort Christina Abbotts on her 29th birthday.

The sick killer struck Ms Abbotts around 13 times on the back of the head with a ceramic pestle and strangled her.

Police found her in a flat she was house-sitting for a friend in Crawley, West Sussex. Naseem lounged around for 12 hours after her murder, sending pornographic photos and drinking champagne.

Anna says the danger is ever-present, referring to one occasion where she buzzed in a man posing as a client.

"I only ever let in clients and I thought he was one," she said. "But when I looked through the peephole there were three men standing there wearing black masks and hammering at the door, I was terrified and screamed until they finally ran off."

Once a beacon for sex workers, Anna fears that vibrant Soho is becoming ever quieter, partly due to police crack downs that cause prostitutes to look for work elsewhere.

"I couldn't live anywhere else, but it's changing here fast, it's much quieter," she said. "It's becoming more difficult to make a living.

"I've seen raids where police are treating sex workers like criminals, I think this could be driving people away.

"How they treat us is disgraceful. We are human beings, many women have children and are in this business to support their families."

Stella Winter a spokeswoman from The English Collective of Prostitutes, said the 2010 Policing and Crime Act that brought in more stringent laws had been a "disaster" for sex workers and led to more women working alone or in more remote areas.

"Women working on the streets are facing more violence because they spend their time running from the police, are forced to work in more isolated areas and cant screen clients who are nervous of being arrested," she said.

"Prostitution is increasing as womens poverty has gone up. It is infuriating that the police and government response has been to step up arrests.

"Women should get protection not prosecution and have economic choices to leave prostitution if they want.