Queens couple charged with sex trafficking
A Queens couple is accused of running a sex trafficking scheme on Long Island.
Prosecutors say Zhaowei Yin and Shuwen Ai, both of Flushing, forced women at their spas to have sex with customers for money.
The husband and wife pleaded not guilty to charges of human trafficking and promoting prostitution inside two businesses in Nassau County.
Acting Nassau District Attorney Madeline Singas says the women were hired to work at Luxy's Spa and The Panda Foot Spa in Nassau County last year. Prosecutors say they were then forced by the couple to perform sex acts on any client who asked for it.
"When one woman was complaining that one of the clients was getting physical and choking her and she ran out to get assistance from one of the defendants, she was ordered back in to continue servicing her client," says Singas.
Investigators say the couple threatened to deport one victim if she didn't comply. The other victim was allegedly told naked photos of her would be plastered all over the Internet.
Prosecutors say the woman were often docked pay and were sometimes forced to sleep in the shops.
Attorneys for the couple say their clients have done nothing wrong.
Bail for Yin and Ai was set at $250,000 cash or bond. The couple is due back in court Oct. 15.