EL PASO, TX (KTSM) – The El Paso County Attorney’s Office has obtained a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) against “New Life Massage”, an East El Paso massage parlor, on the suspicion of alleged illegal activity occurring habitually. The massage parlor was served with a judgment that shut down the business Friday.
The massage parlor, pending the outcome of a Temporary Injunction hearing, will remain closed until at least the hearing date.
The hearing is scheduled for August 5, 2022, at 10:30 a.m. in County Court at Law Number Seven
The lawsuit is the result of work between the Texas Department of Public Safety, the Texas Department of Licensing Regulation (TDLR), El Paso Police Department Vice Unit, the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI), the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), and the El Paso County Attorney’s Office.
The case was initiated by the Nuisance Abatement Team of the El Paso County Attorney’s Office after receiving several complaints of illegal activity occurring at the massage parlor located at 1188 N. Yarbrough Dr. Ste. H., El Paso, Texas 79925.
The lawsuit alleges that “New Life Massage” habitually violates sections of the Texas Occupations Code (OCC) and the Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code (CPRC). Violations include the hiring of unlicensed massage therapists, and evidence that male customers who frequent “New Life Massage” are offered and receive sexual services.
During the past 39 months, with assistance of law enforcement officers and state inspectors, the County Attorney’s Office has documented dozens of violations at the establishment, including operating without a license allowing persons who are not licensed massage therapists to perform massages and prostitution. In addition, there is evidence that some employees may live on the premises, or have their movements restricted, which is some evidence of human trafficking.
On Friday, July 22, 2022, evidence in the case was presented in County Court at Law Number Seven, where the request for a Temporary Restraining Order was approved by the Honorable Judge Ruben Morales. The establishment was closed this afternoon and will remain closed at least until Friday, August 5, 2022, when the Court will hear evidence to consider the approval of a Temporary Injunction.
The Nuisance Abatement Team of the County Attorney’s Office focuses on criminal nuisances or possible illegal activity on properties or in businesses.
“The County Attorney’s Office Nuisance Abatement Team and law enforcement agencies work together to hold businesses accountable when they permit ongoing criminal conduct. In this instance, the outcome was a temporary shutdown of the business with a hearing scheduled to decide its future,” said El Paso County Attorney Jo Anne Bernal.
“Our agency is still working hard to safeguard citizens from illegal activities even during the pandemic, using every tool at our disposal to spot and remove public nuisances,” Bernal concluded.
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