clogged toilet leads to prostitution ring
Photograph by Getty Images

​Authorities dove deep for this case

Police in Austin took out a prostitution ring at a massage parlor after a pipe that was clogged with hundreds of condoms tipped them off that something fishy was going on.

According to an arrest affidavit obtained by the Austin American-Statesmanthat was filed on Tuesday, authorities were told in early February by a realty company that managed the property that Jade Massage Therapy LLC might be offering up prostitution to its customers.

Apparently other tenants in the building had also voiced their suspicions and, of course, there was the whole condoms-in-the-pipes issue.

Sgt. Kevin Covington told the Statesman that the clogged pipes became part of the evidence in the case. “I was like, ‘You’ve got to be kidding me,’” he said. “It’s not the normal tip you would get, or lead you would get on a place committing criminal activity, but it happened, so that helped us out.”

It goes a little deeper than that: One of the owners of the business, a woman named Juan Wang, was stopped by security at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport two days before the pipes were discovered with $30,000 in cash wrapped up in several duct-taped bundles, per the affidavit. She told police she had saved the money in order to have a medical procedure in China, and that the money came from Jade Massage. She also said that she made about $20,000 a year at the parlor, but became “visibly nervous” when officials pointed out that she was carrying more than a year’s salary.

She was eventually allowed to board the plane, but left a phone number that was connected to a Backpage.com account that had ads for sexual services available at another location under the name “Jade Massage.”

When officials conducted a raid on that location, they found Wang in a room with a naked man and another woman in a separate room with a naked man.

Wang and her husband, who is listed as a co-owner of the business, face charges of engaging in organized criminal activity and money laundering.