OKC Prostitution Sting Nabs Some Notable Names
OKLAHOMA CITY - From the sordid streets of Oklahoma City, to the seedy sex ads found on the internet, Oklahoma City Police embarked on a week-long prostitution sting.
Undercover officers busted 22 suspected prostitutes, escorts, customers, and pimps during the operation. Eleven were picked up on South Robinson and the surrounding area. Nearly a dozen more arrested by undercover officers who intercepted sex ads online.
The online sting happened over the course of two days. When the alleged customers or alleged escorts showed up to hotel rooms on South Meridian in Oklahoma City, they were arrested.
"The consequences go far deeper than prosecution," said Brian Bates, an anti- prostitution advocate operating JohnTV.com. "It will damage your reputation and it can damage your business reputation."
According to a comparison of arrest reports from Oklahoma City Police and state records for business filings, a couple of wealthy investors who are tied to parts of town the city is trying to revitalize, were caught responding to sex ads online.
Avraham Shemuelian, an investor with E&E Capital of Los Angeles, is tied to the $1.4 million building at 1141 N. Robinson in Midtown. He also recently acquired a property for $475,000 at 1200 N. Robinson in Midtown. Shemuelian is one of the 22 arrested.
"It's pretty ironic when you have groups that come here to revitalize parts of town but they are caught engaging in the very activity that can actually have the exact opposite effect on those parts of town," Bates said
Neither Shemuelian nor his investment company returned calls from News 9 before this report was filed.
Suman Patel also declined an interview following his arrest in the prostitution bust. He's an Oklahoma City business owner. State records show he owns several hotels similar to the one where police caught him trying to engage in prostitution.
Patel is listed as registered agent for Raaj Hotels Enterprises, Inc., Manit and Paree Hotels Enterprises, and Ramraj Enterprises in Oklahoma.
"I'm sure they don't want prostitution activities going on where they are investing millions," Bates said. Bates said he also thinks they should not be welcomed in any community where they are engaging in illegal activities with women.
Mindy Cottier is one of the women arrested in online sting. She is accused of negotiating money for sex with an undercover officer. She is also known as a potential witness in the high profile murder of Carina Saunders, the19 year old found dismembered in body bags in Bethany in 2011.
Cottier has a criminal history of similar offenses. She's been arrested several times since providing information to detectives in the Saunders' case.
All 22 arrestees were booked into the Oklahoma County Jail for offering to engage in prostitution. Half will also face felony charges violating the computers act.