ANCHORAGE — Anchorage police have raided a local massage parlor they say has operated as a front for prostitution.
Sgt. Kathy Lacey said it’s the sixth time since 2002 that police have caught employees at Tropic Massage on Tudor Road offering sex for money.
In the Tuesday raid, police arrested Myong Gin Chow, 46, who is accused of practicing prostitution.
Police also arrested Dong Ki, 60, who is charged with maintaining a place for prostitution and resisting arrest.
The Anchorage Daily News reports police also hope to apprehend their bosses.
“We’re always looking for who’s running these women,” Lacey said. “We’re trying to get the person who’s making money from what they’re doing.”
No one answered the massage parlor’s phone Wednesday.
Police said a vice unit investigator at some point made a deal to pay for sex and officers later returned to the strip mall shop with a search warrant.
Ki tried to run out the back door, according to Lacey, who said evidence inside the shop pointed to prostitution.
Police conduct similar prostitution stings on a regular basis, Lacey said.
Business licenses for such massage parlors often list untraceable corporation names as owners, and suspected prostitutes are usually uncooperative or claim ignorance, Lacey said.
Lacey plans to notify the owners of the strip mall of the alleged activity at Tropic Massage. If the business is not evicted, city prosecutors could decide to go after the property itself, she said.
Nuisance laws hold owners accountable for maintaining a place that’s regularly used for criminal activity, Lacey said.