A Blaine man accused of assisting a multistate sex trafficking ring out of suburban homes in the Twin Cities metro pleaded guilty to two felony charges related to transporting victims and managing criminal proceeds.
Dongzhou Jiang, 28, entered a guilty plea for racketeering and conspiracy to traffick an individual— both felonies— in a Washington County court Friday, Aug. 25. Four other Chinese nationals face similar charges for their role in the criminal operation.
Washington County Attorney Peter Orput had previously described Jiang as the "regional manager" for the operation.
During his testimony, Jiang told the court he answered to Hong Nmn Jing, Sophia Wang Navas, two Orange County-based women he referred to as "boss ladies."
Navas, Jing and Navas' daughter, Fangyao Wu also face related charges in Washington County.
Jiang said Jing and Navas would make travel arrangements for Chinese women, whom he would pick up from the airport and transport to hotels, apartments and townhouses in Washington and Ramsey Counties.
He said he typically received about $30 per trip.
His responsibilities also included collecting and depositing money into bank accounts, picking up supplies like condoms and wet wipes and arranging property rentals.
Once the women arrived at the locations, Jiang said, they would stay for 15 days to one month before relocating to one of 29 states where the organization allegedly operates.
Jiang said the women the group helped traffic from China were at one point beaten, robbed and sexually assaulted.
Jiang said he had previously earned a bachelor's degree in finance before emigrating from China to the United States more than two years ago. He acknowledged that, although he learned English after moving to the U.S., he repeatedly declined offers for an interpreter during court proceedings.
Washington County District Judge Susan Miles ordered Jiang undergo a psychological evaluation, citing "ongoing concerns" with his mental health.
His sentencing is scheduled Dec. 15.