Authorities Thursday raided four massage parlors in Utah County, Utah following an investigation into human trafficking and prostitution.
The Deseret News reports police launched an investigation following an anonymous tip in September that employees had engaged in sex acts with customers for money.
Officers arrested six people on charges including human trafficking, money laundering, prostitution and aiding prostitution, according to the Gephardt Daily.
“Throughout the investigation, we were able to determine that at least one victim of human trafficking was involved in this that we were able to remove from the situation and get some resources and some help,” Lt. Josh Christensen with the American Fork Police Department, said to KSL.
An affidavit obtained by KSL stated that the massage parlor operators forced one of the women to stay at the massage parlor against her will and could not go anywhere without her boss’ consent.
“These Asian females fall into a world of human trafficking and become victims in their own right,” the affidavit stated. “In the Asian culture, family honor is among the highest level of priority to these Asian female victims. The criminal organizations often threaten to contact their families and provide them with information of voluntary prostitution occurring in the United States, which is unwanted by the female victims.”
Police arrested Jun Li, 36, of Orem; Xiao Ling Wang, 42, of American Fork; Yue Ming, 39, of Orem; Tomney, 44, of American Fork; Ju Ying Wang, 56, of American Fork; Joseph Edward Ferreri, 54, of Salina.
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