​Inside secret Cannes escort WhatsApp group recruiting models for €50,000 a night to sleep with billionaire Arab, US and Russian businessmen

Known for its star-studded red carpets and award-winning film premieres, the Cannes Film Festival is hiding something far more bawdy behind all the glitz and glamour, a new report claims.

The festival is home to a secret escort ring where women’s businesses are bought and sold via WhatsApp by Arab, Russian and American businessmen.

Agents use the messaging service to recruit models for their wealthy employers and sometimes pay up to €50,000 for one night, according to BILD.

The publication gained access to one of these WhatsApp groups, where advertisements are placed, allowing thousands of women to spend the night with the wealthy visitors of the festival.

According to BILD, one advertisement read: ‘We are looking for real top models, beautiful girls, amateur models. All nationalities, preferably Latinas.’

Women are paid as much as €50,000 for sex by rich businessman at the film festival (File image for illustration purposes only)

Another offered ‘top models’ €10,000 for a day trip to Monaco, while a third was willing to pay ‘blonde models only’ $10,000 a week for a yacht trip

These huge WhatsApp groups ask women to submit photos along with their age and weight.

Many requests, often from wealthy foreign businessmen, concern so-called ‘image jobs’, in which models are asked to accompany guests to dinners or high-end parties.

These men would pay for entire groups of women to spend the night at their star-studded gatherings.

Other trades, however, are known as ‘Image+’ jobs and see the women receive a cash bonus in exchange for sex with paying festival goers.

These women often meet their hosts on site for the first time and receive very little information in advance about what is going on, according to BILD.

Surprisingly, women often have their passports confiscated and the use of mobile phones banned during their travels, in an attempt to prevent the identities of these wealthy men from leaking to the public.

Some women reported having their passports confiscated after meeting men at the festival (file image purely for illustration purposes)

Some women reported having their passports confiscated after meeting men at the festival (file image purely for illustration purposes)

“This isn’t just modern prostitution,” an insider revealed.

“This also involves a lot of black money, there are no bills.

‘Young women are often offered 3,000 euros for a dinner, 10,000 euros for a party and 50,000 euros for a night.’

Last year, a MailOnline investigation revealed that sex workers from across Europe, known in France as ‘putes de luxes’, flock to the annual event to sell their bodies in luxury hotels and yachts.

Models, aspiring actresses and some Instagram influencers are invited to parties or to stay aboard superyachts and enjoy champagne on tap.

But the unwritten expectation in some cases is that so-called ‘yacht girls’ will have to thank their hosts by having sex with them or other guests.

Unlike WhatsApp groups where escorts often know in advance how much they will receive, these women are often handed an envelope full of cash after their visit.

One escort, from Slovakia, told MailOnline: ‘You have to be careful because the hotels don’t like this happening but they can’t stop it. This is the oldest industry in the world and the film industry is all about glamor and excitement. Of course people want to have sex.

Yachts are often used as a discreet location for these deals

Yachts are often used as a discreet location for these deals

‘I charge 1,000 euros per hour, but from two hours or more there is a discount and the rate for the whole night is 5,000 euros – but in reality it often only takes people a few minutes.

“Then it’s just a matter of talking to them for the rest of the hour if they can no longer take advantage of the opportunity. It doesn’t help that they might be drunk or on drugs, unless it’s Viagra and then I start to struggle.

‘Money is not an issue if they can afford to stay somewhere like Le Majestic. But what they pay for is discretion. I would never reveal anyone’s name.’

A member of the yacht crew told MailOnline that the use of these ships for prostitution has become ‘much more discreet’ in recent years.

He said: ‘I don’t think anyone wants anyone openly buying or selling sex. You may want to have beautiful women on your yacht, but you don’t want to be seen as a sloppy old man who takes advantage of girls.

‘Another factor is the sanctions against Russia because of the war in Ukraine. It has led to the disappearance of Russian oligarchs from European waters. Those guys knew how to party.

‘The term ‘yacht girl’ also seems to have changed in recent years. I’ve heard it used to describe any woman who’s with a rich man, whether it’s on a boat or at a resort somewhere.”