Prostitution ring paraded women in hotel parking lot, police say
A man and a woman have been arrested in connection with an international prostitution ring after officers saw women being paraded around a hotel parking lot for customers in South Los Angeles, authorities said.
Los Angeles resident Juan Chavez, 45, was charged earlier this month with pimping and pandering. Maritza Marroquin, 25, of Los Angeles posted bail, then failed to appear for a hearing and remains at large, the Los Angeles Police Department said in a statement.
A two-month investigation into the prostitution ring led authorities to the 100 block of West 82nd Street on March 15, officials said. Officers reported that they saw several women being loaded into a vehicle, and followed the car to the parking lot of a hotel in the 7400 block of South Vermont Avenue.
There, the women were walked around the parking lot for potential customers, police said. Police detained everyone involved and arrested Chavez and Marroquin, authorities said. Two Mexican woman who were victims of human trafficking were rescued as well, said LAPD spokeswoman Karen Rayner.
A federal investigation is ongoing, officials said.
-- Frank Shyong
Image: Approximate location of incident shown in black. Credit: Los Angeles Times Mapping L.A.