by: Mike Petchenik Updated:
FULTON COUNTY, Ga. - Johns Creek police have busted another massage spa they say is a front for prostitution.
“They advertised what they referred to as a ‘girlfriend experience,’ which according to our investigators, is code word for illegal sexual activity occurring at a massage parlor,” said police Lt. Chris Byers.
Byers said an undercover sting confirmed the suspicions and resulted in the arrest of Jinzh Zhuang, 49, on a city ordinance violation of prostitution. Police also cited the business owner, Xue Sun.
“It’s illegal,” said Byers. “It’s not wanted here in Johns Creek and our investigators take these allegations very seriously when this is occurring in our businesses.”
When Petchenik visited the spa Wednesday, he was surprised when Zhuang greeted him at the door. Using a translation application on his iPhone, Petchenik asked Zhuang in Chinese if she committed the crimes police accused her of committing.
“No,” she said. “No touch here.”
Nearby business owner Victoria Ganes told Petchenik she is concerned about the proliferation of erotic massage spas in the city. Ganes said the Chamber of Commerce is working with the city to clean up the area.
“It seems that nobody wants it here, whether you’re a business owner or a resident,” she said.
Last April, concerned citizens packed the City Council chambers to express concerns over the increasing number of massage businesses opening in Johns Creek.
Larry Hanlon was among them, and he told Petchenik he believes the city is being proactive to crack down on the problem, which he believes includes women being forced into the sex trade.
“Our concern was over proliferation of erotic massage parlors,” he said. “We feel they’ve been serious about the issue and absolutely concerned.”
Mayor Mike Bodker told Petchenik he believes the root cause of problem is a bad economy.
“It is clearly a problem, a problem that’s not unique to Johns Creek,” he said.
Bodker told Petchenik the city is working with the community to come up with new ordinance to address the problem, and with the state on ways to improve enforcement.
“In the end, enforcement is a local problem, but it has to have the tools in the tool belt to deal with the issue,” he said. “We don’t want to just help solve the problem in Johns Creek. Honestly we want to see this problem get eradicated.”