SALT LAKE CITY — Three people are in jail and several women rescued from massage parlors the Utah Attorney General’s Office said were a front for sex trafficking.
The AG’s Office issued a statement saying a five-month-long investigation led to the arrests in both Utah And Salt Lake Counties. The six massage parlors were allegedly decoys for sex trafficking.
Leo Lucey, Chief of the Criminal Investigations Division at the Utah Attorney General’s Office stated, “The women victims, in this case, were suffering in plain sight.”
Lucey said they were trapped in an extensive and powerful criminal enterprise. They were brought to Utah under the guise of having legitimate jobs and then forced into sex work.
“We are pleased that we are able to work with our law enforcement partners and the Asian Association of Utah as these women recover from the trauma they have endured,” Lucey said.
According to the statement, the SECURE (Statewide Enforcement of Crimes by Undocumented Residents) Strike Force — which includes Taylorsville Police Department, the Utah Attorney General’s Office and many other law enforcement agencies — helped several women in six different locations. The victims were provided with medical care, shelter and other services.
Probable cause statements show those in jail are Feng Lianfang, Xiuyun Huo and Ruixue Chen. They were arrested on 3-counts of prostitution, money laundering and maintaing, committing or failing to remove a public nuisance.
The statement from the Attorney General’s Office said more than $100,000 was seized, mostly in cash. And the suspects bank accounts and assests are all frozen. It also stated the case is ongoing and additional charges may be added.
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