Soho used to be notorious for ripping off the unwary who ventured there late at night looking for sexual thrills. Clip joints were the lowest of the low, giving the relatively legitimate and almost honest adult establishments a really bad name.
By enticing you in with offers of “adult entertainment” then serving nothing but a glass of orange and a brief audience with a lady of questionable virtue they had you hooked. You would then be presented with a ridiculous bill which had to be paid before you were allowed to leave.
You had to be pretty naïve or completely plastered to fall for the con. I remember being out in Soho as a teenager with some mates and seeing the “doormen” outside these places. We were completely blitzed after a night out but were aware enough of the dangers to know not to go anywhere near them.
I’m not having a go at the people who get caught by this, they are often non-UK residents and unaware that such cynical cons exist in a country that some people still regard as good-mannered and friendly. For the most part the UK is just that, but there are always a few bastards willing to do whatever it takes (short of working for a living) to make a fast buck.
In case you were wondering Westminster council have really started cracking down on this sort of behaviour by “Bar” owners.