In 2004, during one of his Cuba sojourns, in a place called Playa Jaimanitas, he met Hank Allen, then a student at Valencia Community College in Orlando. Allen recalls that Strecker would do things like approach a young girl walking with her mother on the street and ask if she was available. "He has no wife or kids or anything to lose," Allen says, "and other people who travel there do."

The jineteras in Cuba considered sex a casual activity like eating a ham sandwich.

Allen had headed to the island on a field trip for his humanities class and ended up dropping out of school and staying until he ran out of cash — about six weeks. When he returned to the United States, Allen registered the website Cubadave.com and let Strecker post there.

Strecker was more concerned with attention than money. "I could be a professional photographer, and I've been complimented by everyone," he says. "You get proud of your work."

Dave poses in his Key West bedroom, which is covered with pictures of prostitutes he's slept with at least ten times.
Kristin Björnsen
Dave poses in his Key West bedroom, which is covered with pictures of prostitutes he's slept with at least ten times.
Dominican women chase Dave down the street because a plug on his website means customers will know to ask for them by name.
Courtesy of David Strecker
Dominican women chase Dave down the street because a plug on his website means customers will know to ask for them by name.

But soon the Bush administration cracked down on travel to Cuba. Strecker began looking for somewhere else to travel. Around that time, Daniel Caro, who lived in San José, began reading the Cubadave blog. He sent Strecker an email about monetizing his stories by taking advantage of social media links and toning down salaciousness.

"I told him he'd have a lot more reach if we could keep the language from being offensive," Caro remembers. "I told him we'd have to do it in a way that's acceptable for Facebook and social media."

The 30-something self-described science-fiction nerd and community college graduate had worked a high-stress IT job in Maryland before moving to Costa Rica, where he says he lived a more laid-back lifestyle. When the two finally met in person in San José, Caro began following Strecker around with a camera and microphone. Caro, who uses a pen name, didn't want to attach his name or image to anything related to sex tourism. Meanwhile, Strecker was more than open about his exploits on the photo blog.

The plan worked. Adventures of Cubadave was soon receiving almost 17,000 hits a week, according to their count. It wouldn't be long before more than 1,400 men were willing to be publicly associated with the blog's Facebook fan page. There were almost 5,000 email subscribers. Caro and Strecker have even written an e-book together, Cuba Dave's Guide to Sosua, Dominican Republic.

Simply put: If Caro is the brains of the operation, Cubadave is the brand.

"Daniel is the smartest guy when it comes to any sort of cyberwork," says Strecker, who jokes he'd probably be locked up if he didn't have Caro telling him where to draw the line with his offensive pictures. "He knows what will and will not show up on Google. He'll find any loophole and do that."

Why are men so receptive to Strecker, a Mister Rogers look-alike who can't keep it in his cardigan? Strecker says his subscribers are delighted to be in Sosua, where girls prance along the beach in thong bikinis while looking for companionship. Money is the only criterion for attraction. "They look over and see their wives eating potato chips on the couch," Strecker says of his audience. "Suddenly they're like, 'Yeah, I'll go.' "


Three years ago, Strecker began traveling monthly to the Dominican Republic, where a friend told him the cost of living was much lower than that of Costa Rica. He visited Rosa Salon & Spa, a shabby orange building with bars on its windows near a strip of beachfront hotels. According to owner Rosa Iris, he is always exceedingly friendly to the handful of women who work there giving massages and manicures.

Girls in the DR grow up brushing one another's hair and doing each other's nails, Iris says. There are also no jobs to be had in Sosua, where many of the girls become pregnant by age 15. Proffering skills learned in girlhood is often the only way they know how to make money as adults, although the competition there for tourist dollars is fierce.

Rosa's salon was what is known as a "jack shack" in monger terms. Often, after getting a haircut, Strecker says, he would take one of Rosa's girls into a backroom and have sex on a cot that was curtained off by a few hanging sheets. He spent a lot of money there. More important, though, he also brought many other customers.

The 23-year-old Rosa considers Strecker a godsend. "He started taking my photos and putting them in his online magazine, and then people started coming here and asking for me by name," she told New Times during a recent phone call. "People read it all over the world."

Only recently has the internet become available in Rosa's part of the world. She uses it to promote herself and to attract foreign clients. And because online access is so new, she says, she can do so without the prying eyes of older relatives.

Strecker says many of the girls at Rosa's Salon live a double life that comes back to haunt them when they eventually get married. "The problem that's happened to me is that you post these photos [of these girls] and do a story on them, and some guy comes and takes them away and wants it to go away," he says. "On the internet, it doesn't go away."

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5 comments
haxxoristhebest
haxxoristhebest

Hello.. I am a 15 year old computer hacker. I have recently found a major security flaw in you site that allows xss injection.. I could easily deface your site but I am a white hat hacker. Here is simple proof. Your problem is your search button.


If you search this <script>alert('XSS');</script>

It shows you have an XSS vulnerability on your site.

New Times Broward Palm Beach
New Times Broward Palm Beach

Well this is probably for the best, Kimber, because you're not going to like next week's feature on Professor Boobs McButtenstein, South Florida's foremost authority on booty shakin'.

Kimber Kirton
Kimber Kirton

It's amazing that you guys can manage to put together a six-page feature on every perverted, sexploitator but not a single article of actual substance. You have lost a reader, I'm surprised I lasted that long. You're nothing more than a trash mag that uses tits and ass to sell their incompetence.

 
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