Ellicott City tanning salon shut after 3 women were charged with prostitution One neighbor says she's glad

July 02, 1993|By TaNoah V. Sterling | TaNoah V. Sterling,Staff Writer

An Ellicott City tanning salon where three women were arrested and charged with prostitution nearly two months ago has closed its doors.

The Miami Spa Tanning Salon in the 9200 block of Baltimore National Pike had reopened briefly after a May 13 raid by county vice and narcotics detectives, the FBI and immigration agents, but the second-floor business was vacated "within days of the arrest," said Herbert Thaler Jr., an attorney representing V and P Associates, which owns the building.

"We had to replace the rug, the door was broken and there are problems with the plumbing. We are working to get legal possession of the property, and we will hold them liable for damages," Mr. Thaler said. "It's unfortunate that they had them in there in the first place."

For some of the seven businesses in the building, known as Malabar Plaza and located just west of St. John's Lane, the departure was welcomed.

"I just know they're gone, and I'm glad they are. I'm sure everyone else is also," said Judy Fischer, a receptionist at the Paul Brilhart dentistry office on the first floor of the building. "They were just a nuisance."

"I once went up there to give them something and saw a girl running through the place with no top on holding clothing up to her chest," Ms. Fischer said. "I've had delivery men come in here and they'd say, 'Do you know what's going on up there?' "

Others seemed less concerned.

"I couldn't care less. They didn't bother us," said Rose Jones, manager of the Subway Sandwich restaurant downstairs. "I get a kick out of hearing something like that, but it's a way of life for certain people," said Ross Kelly, a manager trainee at the First Quality cleaners downstairs from the spa. "Everybody's got skeletons in their closet."

Lee Ho Son, 27, Che Sook Cha, 28, and Eun Ok Han, 25, of no fixed addresses, were charged with prostitution after authorities allegedly found two women engaged in sex with men and recovered about 100 condoms and about $10,000 in cash, court records showed.

The women were released from the county Detention Center May 17 on $10,000 bond each. They are scheduled for trial Sept. 1 in county Circuit Court.

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