BUFFALO -- A federal grand jury has returned an indictment charging Feng Yang Chen, 41, LiangLiang Guo, 31, and Cheng Qi Li, 28, all of Flushing, with conspiracy to violate the Mann Act and the Travel Act related to the operation of an interstate prostitution business. Chen was also charged with conspiracy to commit sex trafficking by force, fraud and coercion; and sex trafficking by force, fraud and coercion. Chen faces a mandatory minimum penalty of 15 years in prison and a maximum of life. Guo and Li face a maximum of five years in prison.
The indictment states that throughout the conspiracy, the defendants victimized 12 individuals who traveled state to state to engage in prostitution in various hotels. The indictment is seeking the forfeiture of $476,354.74 in proceeds from the illegal prostitution activities; two properties located in Flushing; a 2012 Porsche Cayenne; as well as multiple cellular telephones, computers, and iPads utilized during the prostitution conspiracy.
Acting U.S. Attorney Kennedy stated, “While the sexual exploitation of another is a criminal act that victimizes the person exploited, a criminal enterprise such as this, which provides profits to those who orchestrate such exploitation, is particularly pernicious.”
“The defendant allegedly callously abused and exploited vulnerable women for her own financial gain,” said ICE-HSI Special Agent-in-Charge James C. Spero. “The charges announced today will hopefully lay the foundation to restore the dignity of those victimized by this alleged criminal enterprise.”