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By Alan Blank | August 14, 2009
Authorities in Costa Mesa are asking the City Council to extend a 45-day ban on new massage parlors that went into effect in July by 10 months and 15 days, rounding it out at one year. An ever-increasing concentration of massage parlors in Costa Mesa and an influx in applications for new permits has made it too difficult for the city’s police department to guard against parlors that serve as fronts for prostitution, according to police. In addition, a law (Senate Bill 731)
November 11, 2000
-- Deepa Bharath Police arrested the owners of two Bristol Street massage parlors Wednesday night on suspicion of prostitution and operating without a permit, authorities said. Mea Ok Mun, 43, and Nuwee Wattanakaew, 47, were taken into custody after a random inspection, said Costa Mesa Police Sgt. Don Holford. Police said the names of the businesses were not available Friday. Police found evidence of the businesses operating illegally without permits, said Holford.
By Brianna Bailey | November 8, 2008
The Newport Beach City Council is poised to rub out city restrictions that bar men and women from getting massages in the same room. An ordinance the council will consider at its next meeting Wednesday would pave the way for local resorts to offer the latest trend in the spa industry — couples massages. “Couples massage is one of those increasingly popular trend in terms of spa treatments,” said Gary Sherwin, president and chief executive of the Newport Beach Conference and Visitors Bureau.
April 3, 2001
Deepa Bharath COSTA MESA -- Massage parlors being used as fronts for prostitution are not a huge problem in Costa Mesa anymore -- at least not as huge as it was about two years ago, officials said. When Costa Mesa Police Lt. Ron Smith, Sgt. Bob Phillips and Det. Keith Davis were assigned to the task of getting rid of the pseudo-masseuses four years ago, there were more than a dozen to deal with. "Today we're down to just two or three," said Smith.
By Alicia Robinson | September 21, 2007
A Newport Beach massage business operator was expected to appear in court today, after Newport Beach police arrested him Wednesday on suspicion of sexual battery, police said. Steven Wesley Lovell, 50, is a resident of Newport Beach and owns Care of the Body at 215 Riverside Ave., also in Newport Beach. Police said they arrested Lovell after a woman reported he sexually battered her while she received massage treatments at his office. Lovell has worked as a certified personal trainer since 2005, police said.
January 23, 2001
Jennifer Kho COSTA MESA -- The City Council had just finished giving its preliminary OK to a new massage ordinance when Mayor Libby Cowan decided she'd like to massage it some more. Cowan wants to change the ordinance to allay fears from legitimate massage therapists, who say the new law would hurt their businesses. "I've asked [city staff] to work with legitimate massage groups and a couple of chiropractors to review the ordinance and return with another ordinance at some point," she said Monday.
February 28, 2001
Jennifer Kho COSTA MESA -- While some massage business owners say their concerns about a new ordinance have been assuaged after an explanatory meeting with police last week, others say they still oppose the changes. "I thought it was a very positive exchange," said Sgt. Robert Phillips, who works in the Costa Mesa Police Department's vice and narcotics unit. Council members gave preliminary approval Feb. 7 for a revision to the city's 2-year-old massage ordinance.
September 4, 2004
Marisa O'Neil Police arrested two Los Angeles County women this week on suspicion of prostitution at a local massage parlor. Officers received an anonymous tip that New Oriental Mass. was operating without a license in a medical building at the corner of Harbor Boulevard and Fair Drive, said Costa Mesa Police Sgt. Marty Carver. Vice detectives started an investigation and sent an undercover officer into the business. "He got solicited and made the arrest," Carver said, adding that the solicitation was for sex, not massage.
By Joseph Serna, | March 11, 2011
COSTA MESA — Seven massage parlors all within one business complex were accused of being fronts for prostitution and served search warrants Friday by police, prosecutors and immigration officials. "From the layman's perspective, it appears to be a commercial brothel," said Lt. Mark Manley. The businesses are bundled into a small facility at 440 Fair Drive, where there are also three marijuana dispensaries and a pizza parlor. The massage parlors served warrants Friday are Relax Zone, Super Day Spa Massage, Angel Massage, Fantastic Spa, Rainbow Spa, A1 Oriental Massage Inc. and Visage Spa. The complex is about 50 yards from the College Park neighborhood, and within half a mile of schools, the civic center and the Orange County Fairgrounds.
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