Dakota County Attorney James Backstrom announced that Xueyan Wang, age 40 of Inver Grove Heights, was charged today with four counts of Prostitution in the Second Degree (two counts each of Promote and Receives Profit), in connection with activities she organized as the owner operator of Herb Spa, a massage parlor in Inver Grove Heights.
A summary of the allegations contained in the criminal complaint is set forth below:
In March of 2019, officers of the Inver Grove Heights Police Department began an investigation into Herb Spa after it was determined that acts of prostitution may be occurring therein. The business came under suspicion because although located in a strip mall, the business had no signage, the front door was locked at all times and customers were required to ring a doorbell to gain entry. In addition, officers located customer reviews concerning Herb Spa on a website commonly used to provide information on what illicit services can be obtained from various massage parlors. The reviews described the sexual acts that were performed, the masseuse that performed the act, and what the cost was. During the course of the investigation, officers stopped two men on two separate occasions after exiting Herb Spa. Both men reported that they had paid women working at the business to perform sexual acts with them.
Surveillance was conducted on the business and revealed that Wang and women working at the business appeared to be living at the business. The investigation also revealed that Wang made multiple runs to and from the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport; and paid airfare for women to fly from San Francisco and Chicago.
A review of Wang's bank account, revealed that she issued checks to purchase several plane tickets, pay for advertising on a website (formerly operational as backpage.com), and on more than one occasion, wired money to an account in China from her personal checking account.
A search warrant was executed on the business. Officers located two women inside who were living in the back of the business. One confirmed she was from California and had been working at the business since February. She indicated she pays Wang rent and that Wang retains half the profits that she makes from the services provided. Wang goes shopping to provide groceries and toiletries for the women. Approximately $13,000 in bundles of currency were located dating back to June 10, 2019. In a safety deposit box belonging to Wang, over $42,000 in mostly twenty-dollar bills was located. A notepad was found in one of the rooms containing a ledger noting different services along with corresponding prices.
Additional facts pertaining to this case can be found in the criminal complaint at Criminal Complaint Search. While in custody, a mug shot can be viewed at Inmate Search.
Backstrom commented: "These allegations are disturbing. Trafficking individuals is an act against humanity and we are committed to aggressively pursuing crimes of this nature in our community."
Backstrom thanked the Inver Grove Heights Police Department for their thorough investigation of this case.
Wang made her first appearance in court today and bail in the amount of $750,000 without conditions ($375,000 with conditions) was set by Dakota County District Court Judge Thomas Pugh. Wang's next court appearance is set for August 15, 2019 at 9:00 a.m. in Hastings.
If you have questions, contact James Backstrom at 651-438-4440.
*Criminal charges are not evidence of guilt. A defendant/suspect is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.