Bismarck officers raided a massage business after three people were charged with facilitating prostitution, police announced Friday.
A long-term investigation into the Hong Kong Spa in Bismarck and the Tokyo Q Spa in Dickinson found that employees at the facilities were offering sexual acts during massages, according to Bismarck Police Lt. Luke Gardiner.
Bismarck police arrested Lance Jacobson, 65, and Dickinson police arrested Jiang Jennings, 56, both of Hanover Park, Ill. An arrest warrant also was issued for Craig Grorud, Bismarck, court records show.
All three are charged with facilitating prostitution, a Class C felony punishable by up to five years in prison.
The arrests of the spa owners stem from an investigation that began over a year ago involving citizen complaints and investigative work, Gardiner said.
In July 2019, an employee of Hong Kong Spa came to the police department to report she was not getting paid fairly and was being asked by the owners to perform sexual acts for extra tips, according to a court affidavit.
The employee told police that Jennings and Jacobson also owned Tokyo Massage in Mandan. The court affidavit states that an investigation into Tokyo Massage resulted in the closure of the spa without criminal charges being filed.
The employee told investigators that Jennings and Jacobson then began operating Hong Kong Spa in Bismarck with Grorud listed on the secretary of state’s website as the owner. The employee told detectives the business charged $80 for a one-hour massage and she would get to keep $10.
Officers also conducted undercover investigations and received complaints from citizens.
In August, Dickinson police received an anonymous letter asking police to “do something about Tokyo Q Spa,” according to a court affidavit. The letter states “They are offering sexual favors to gentleman customers if you leave a ‘tip’! I know this because they did this with my husband and he told me about it.”
Gardiner said the investigation is ongoing.
There were no attorneys listed in court records for Jacobson, Jennings or Grorud.