By Sarah Sarder
An Irving woman pleaded guilty to organizing a Dallas prostitution ring in which she sold numerous women for sex out of two northwest Dallas brothels, federal officials said. Helen Yu Kim, 59, pleaded guilty to one count of using a facility for interstate commerce in aid of racketeering involving prostitution.
Law enforcement arrested the Irving woman and her 36-year-old son, Daniel Mendoza Jr., in November after a sting operation exposed the criminal activity. Officials said they freed dozens of women who were being sold for sex.
Helen Yu Kim was arrested on prostitution charges before, in April 2007 by Dallas Police.
“I am proud that our law enforcement partners poured significant resources into this sting operation in order to liberate the numerous women that Ms. Kim sold for sex,” said U.S. Attorney Erin Nealy Cox. “We were determined to hold her accountable for her willingness to demean other women for financial gain.”
In a previous statement, Cox called that willingness “sickening.” A federal grand jury indicted Kim on racketeering charges weeks after the sting.
In early November, undercover officers approached Kim and Mendoza, posing as businessmen seeking paid sex. The mother-son duo promised more than 50 undercover officers 20 to 25 women at a rate of $2,000 each, but cautioned them about the nature of the services.
“The way this is set up, it could be considered human trafficking,” Mendoza told one undercover officer.
The pair took an upfront payment of $5,000 from the so-called businessmen, who negotiated the deal through a confidential informant and an undercover officer. Kim was arrested after she took the remainder of the payment, following the sting on Nov. 1.
Kim said in plea papers that she ran two brothels and used more than 10 women for commercial sex. The locations on Harry Hines Boulevard, called “Pink One” and “Illusion Spa,” were also living quarters for many of Kim’s victims.
After the sting, officers took several of the women to a local shelter for women who’d survived human trafficking.
Mendoza was also arrested following the sting. He faced drug charges in a separate case for arranging to provide cocaine to an undercover officer, for the sex party his mother had arranged.
Mendoza pleaded guilty. He faces up to 20 years in prison.
Maybe Kim did not realize that bribing and paying off only Texas Authorities was just not enough.
In a Complaint/Affidavit for Arrest Warrant obtained from the DOJ, Agents explained they began an investigation into massage parlors committing acts of prostitution and human trafficking.
“While conducting surveillance on the establishment, I have observed that the individuals there are residing in the establishment, as it has always been opened from the inside, and no one arrives,” the report read. “I have noted that during business hours, the clientele are exclusively men.”
When asked about Dallas County and City of Dallas Public Officials being connected or involved in the 2 brothels?
Federal Agent admitted “numerous people” have been rumored to be involved, but they were never caught on tape.
“I’m not saying it’s not possible any of them were ever there,” he said, “I just have no evidence to corroborate that.”