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Human Smuggling/Trafficking
10/31/2012

Driver for massage parlor pleads guilty to prostitution, money laundering

ALEXANDRIA, Va. – An Annandale, Va., man pleaded guilty Wednesday to operating an unlicensed taxi business that brought women from other states to perform sexual services for patrons at an Annandale-based massage parlor.

The case was investigated by the Washington, D.C. offices of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), Internal Revenue Service's Criminal Investigation, and the Naval Criminal Investigative Service, with assistance by the Fairfax County Police Department.

Jin Seob Oh, 41, originally from South Korea, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to transport women to engage in prostitution, which carries a penalty of up to five years in prison, and conspiracy to commit money laundering, which carries a penalty of up to 20 years. His sentencing is scheduled for Feb. 15, 2013.

In a statement of facts filed with his plea agreement, Oh admitted that from 2010 to June 2012, he owned and operated an unlicensed taxi business known as "Royal Taxi." From February 2011 to April 2012, Oh served as the primary taxi driver for women who worked at "Peach Therapy," a massage parlor located in Annandale that provided sexual services to customers.

The former owner of Peach Therapy, Susan Lee Gross, also known as "Ju Mee Lee Gross," 46, originally from South Korea but now of Trinidad, Colo., encouraged or instructed the women to only obtain transportation from Oh to minimize the number of people who knew the details about the women working at Peach Therapy, the sexual nature of the business, and how they were transported to the massage parlor. The women paid him $40 per trip.

At the direction of Lee Gross, Oh also deposited thousands of dollars of proceeds from commercial sexual activity into Bank of America accounts that belonged to Lee Gross and those opened in the name of a family member. He admitted that he understood that these bank accounts were used to conceal the unlawful source of the money and to ensure that activity could continue.

This case was investigated by HSI, which participates in the Northern Virginia Human Trafficking Task Force, as does IRS-CI and NCIS.

The Northern Virginia Human Trafficking Task Force is a collaboration of federal, state and local law enforcement agencies - along with nongovernmental organizations - dedicated to combating human trafficking and related crimes. From 2011 to the present, 44 defendants have been prosecuted in 25 cases in the Eastern District of Virginia for human trafficking and trafficking-related conduct involving at least 32 victims.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael J. Frank is prosecuting the case on behalf of the United States.