Inside the club where Stacey Tierney died
DREAMS Gentlemen's Club in Melbourne's CBD bills itself as a luxurious nightspot and table top dancing venue, staffed by the "sexiest women".
Beautiful British traveller Stacey Tierney was just one of those "sexy" women who spent her evenings at the well-known Melbourne venue, entertaining party boys while dancing on a platform in a dimly-lit room.
But Stacey's Australian dream - she had moved from Manchester in the northwest of England three years ago - turned into a nightmare.
On December 19 last year, the 29-year-old's body was found in a room in the club. Police believed it had been there about 12 hours.
Her final moment remain a mystery but one theory proposed by Victoria Police is that the exotic dancer had been partying at the closed club with several men who had out of hours access to Dreams. They possibly left after she died.
Victoria Police are also investigating the possibility drugs were used at the nightclub on the night of her death but they have declined to say how Ms Tierney died.
On Tuesday, police confirmed the arrest of a 33-year-old man from Ascot Vale, in Melbourne's north west. He was interviewed on Tuesday on suspicion of perjury and released pending summons.
In the months after Ms Tierney's death, the strip club was slammed by other dancers who knew Stacey. Many were shocked the club had re-opened for "Sexy Poker Tuesdays" only a day after the British national's body was found.
The club was also criticised for deleting Facebook comments from its page.
"What happened to Stacey Tierney?" one woman wrote following the young woman's death.
"You probably should close down the venue for a week or so out of respect."
The club expressed its condolences following Ms Tierney's death, but would not comment further.
Dreams, which spruiks itself as "the sexiest table top dancing venue in Australia", is an underground 'gentlemen's club' fitted out with marble floors, brass railings and plush chairs.
Ms Tierney was a fitness instructor who dreamed of one day becoming a nurse. Instead, after arriving in Australia, she was drawn into the seedy and often dangerous world of strip clubs.
Her family, who are "devastated" by news of her death, say they did not know she was working at a strip club in Australia.
A friend who saw her shortly before her death said she was "loving life and settled into a nice place". Another said they tried to talk her out of working at Dreams Gentlemen's Club, but she was unable to resist the lure of money.
"Look, she went there. She was clearly attracted to the money and I don't blame her,'' one friend said.
"I told her not to … but, at the end of the day, I told Stace she could do what she wanted.''
The Sun newspaper reported that strip clubs have become an attractive option for young female travellers looking to fund their dream holiday, with dancers able to earn up to $2500 a night.
One British woman who worked in the same club as Ms Tierney - although not at the same time - told The Sun it was easy to fall into a double life.
"The money and lifestyle is so addictive, and it's so easy to get into the sex industry here," the woman said.
"Every other backpacker you meet is dancing, escorting or waitressing.
"The earning potential is enormous but there's no way I want my family to know what I'm doing. They'd be destroyed, especially my dad who is a policeman. He'd go spare."
The dancer told The Sun exotic dancers in Australia could charge up to $100 an hour for private dancers. Men who pay for them generally expect "extras". But there were dangers.
"As soon as you come out of the safety of the club's security, clients can get full-on," she said.
"You're literally putting your life in their hands - and they expect more because they're paying good money.
"One of my friends who moved here from Newcastle last year recently passed out through auto-asphyxiation with a client. When she came around the guy had left her for dead.
"She had marks on her neck all over Christmas, which she tried to explain away to her boyfriend and daughter."
Ms Tierney's family released a statement following the death, saying "Stacey was, and will always be, the most amazing, special, caring person you could every meet and this loss has devastated our family".