2 prostitutes rescued in brothel raid
A man is awaiting his preliminary hearing in Madera after being arrested for his suspected involvement in a sex-trafficking operation.
According to Madera Police Sgt. Josiah Arnold, Jesus Raimundo, 43, was arrested Wednesday in Madera for reportedly operating a brothel.
Arnold said the brothel, located in a house at 1025 Nebraska Ave., had been the subject of an investigation by Madera Police for two months.
“During the investigation, we saw a man who would go into the back gate, and into the back door of the house, and stay there for no more than 15 minutes,” Arnold said. “And we would see dozens of guys a day.”
Arnold stated that they had found business cards for the brothel operation during the investigation.
“The business cards were for various, innocent-looking business-type things,” said Arnold. “But when we called the number, we would ask the guy: ‘Hey, we’re interested in a woman,’ or ‘having sex with a woman,’ and the guy would tell us ‘okay, come to the red house on Nebraska Avenue and Cleveland Avenue, and for $40 you can have 15 minutes.’”
The investigation also reportedly discovered women being moved to and from a bus station in Fresno.
A search warrant was issued, and upon serving it, Arnold said, the Special Investigations Unit found Raimundo and two women, both of whom were involved in prostitution, in the house.
One of the women was reportedly found hiding in a closet with a client. Both men were arrested, while the women were sent to a victim-advocacy group for protection. The victims, according to Arnold, were brought in from outside of the state.
“Typically, the girls are under some threat to their life,” Arnold said. “And we do know that the girls that we got in this operation were very afraid, when we picked them up, of their boss.”
Raimundo was booked at Madera County Jail, and later charged with pimping, possession of identification to commit a crime, and presenting false identification to conceal true criminal intent.