SOUTH BRUNSWICK, NJ – Hiding in plain sight in a cluster of office units, the Asian Pearl Spa was raided by the South Brunswick Police, and two women were arrested for prostitution earlier this week. The "spa" has joined the locations of similar recent arrests on Milltown Road in North Brunswick and Route 18 in East Brunswick.
Two women from New York City and New Brunswick are charged with running a prostitution spa on Route 130, police said Monday.
After a three-month investigation, police raided the Asian Pearl Spa at 2525 Route 130 on Nov. 16 and arrested Li Zhang, 47, of New York City and Ying Wen Mina, 49, of New Brunswick, charging them with promoting prostitution, police said.
Promoting prostitution, according to statelaws.com, occurs when "The pimp and/or the person running the house of prostitution can be prosecuted under this statute. In fact, anyone who uses property that he or she is renting to engage in prostitution voids the lease and can be evicted by the landlord."
Police said they initially learned in August that the suspects set up a spa that was a front for prostitution activity.
Detectives spent the next three months conducting surveillance of the business and determined that some of the workers took buses from the city to work there, police said.
Detectives then obtained a warrant to search the business and executed it on Nov. 16, shutting the establishment down and seizing $823 in cash, a 2010 Lexus, a flat screen TV and numerous office items, according to police.
The two suspects were released on a summons pending their first court appearance, police said.
The three-month investigation involved the South Brunswick Police Department, Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office, and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
Currently, the rental property is vacant on Route 130 and signage has been removed for the Asian Pearl.