CHICO — Three suspects are being indicted for their possible connection to a Central Valley brothel network that includes a location in Chico.
Law enforcement received a call in fall 2012 from someone who gave law enforcement a business card that advertised a brothel, according to a criminal complaint signed by Special Agent Rebekah Bills in federal court in Sacramento.
On Oct. 28, 2012, an officer posing as a “John” called the number advertised on the card and a woman gave him directions to a place off 11th Avenue at The Esplanade.
A week later, on Nov. 4, a confidential source called the number while officers monitored it, according to the complaint. The source was told to wait at 11th Avenue and The Esplanade, and moments later he was picked up by a man and driven in a Ford van to a Shoshone Avenue apartment.
While in the apartment, the source, who was wearing a recording device, was “offered” a Hispanic woman that he could hire as a prostitute, according to the complaint. The informant asked for a different woman, but was told by a man to come back at a different time.
An officer posing as a client made a call to the same number on Dec. 26. He asked the woman who answered if she had “any Mexican girls” and if she was still in Chico, to which she replied yes.
The phone number officers called is no longer in service.
The apartment, in the 2000 block of Shoshone Avenue, is suspected to be one of the five locations being allegedly operated by Roberto Urbina-Gonzalez, Everardo Ibarra Regalado and Corina Dominguez, according to the complaint.
Yuba City, Stockton, Fairfield and Sacramento are the other four locations listed in the complaint.
Federal and state law enforcement, including the FBI, began investigating the alleged human trafficking organization in August 2010.
The women who work at the brothel are Hispanic, Spanish-speaking and the majority come from Mexico, according to the complaint.
The women work for a week, in which they are not allowed to leave, and then are either driven to a different brothel or taken to a Greyhound bus station. It is thought that most women are undocumented.
Urbina-Gonzalez, Regalado and Dominguez are being indicted for “transporting illegal aliens” and “harboring illegal aliens,” according to the complaint.
The complaint was filed on Jan. 15.
Staff writer Almendra Carpizo can be reached at 896-7760, email@example.com, or on Twitter @almendracarpizo.