Indictment: Kansas massage parlors were fronts for prostitution

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Federal indictments say massage parlors in Topeka, Lawrence and Salina generated millions of dollars from prostitution.

Prosecutors announced Tuesday in a news release that the indictments name four operators -- Lian Hua Li, Ma Li Vanskike, Weiling Nielsen and Erik Nielsen -- along with a worker, Michael Mills.

Li and Mills are each charged with two counts of conspiracy, two counts of interstate racketeering and four counts of money laundering. Li operated Sunflower Massage (formerly Jasmine Massage) in Topeka and S-Therapy in Salina, and Mills worked with her. The indictment alleges Mills transported female sex workers from the airport to massage parlors. Some of the money was laundered through casinos in Kansas.

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Vanskike operated ABC Massage in Lawrence and is charged with one count of interstate racketeering and five counts of money laundering. She's accused of laundering more than $1 million over a five year period at a casino in Kansas City.

Weiling Nielsen and Erik Nielsen operated Jasmine Massage in Topeka, Naima Asian Massage in Lawrence and Serenity Health Spa in Lawrence. They face two counts of conspiracy, two counts of bank fraud, five counts of money laundering, and one count of racketeering. The indictment alleges they bought and sold California real estate worth millions of dollars while falsely representing themselves to lenders as restaurant managers in Lawrence.

If convicted, the alleged crimes carry the following penalties:

  • Conspiracy: Up to 5 years in federal prison and a fine up to $250,000.
  • Racketeering: Up to five years and a fine up to $250,000.
  • Money laundering and money launder conspiracy: Up to 20 years and a fine up to $500,000.
  • Bank fraud: Up to 30 years and a fine up to $1 million.

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