Couple in Lake Minnetonka home busted for prostitution ring

Charges: Wayzata couple operated big prostitution ring from their home on Lake Minnetonka

WAYZATA, Minn. - Two people have been arrested and charged in connection with running a large-scale prostitution ring centered at a home on Lake Minnetonka.

Ricky Arlen Turner Jr., 28, and Brittany Marie Harenza, 25, face felony charges. Turner also was charged with engaging in the trafficking of a minor and promoting prostitution.

According to court documents, at least 1,600 sex ads featured 35 different women were part of their alleged sex ring.

The investigation into the alleged ring started in January of 2017, when a Woodbury detective noticed an alleged sex ad on Backpage.com. Court documents show how investigators then built a case from surveillance of the Wayzata home, along with text messages and social media posts -- by Turner and Harenza -- that appeared to advertise the business.

The posts also specifically appeared to recruit women with images of money and other material items "earned" through the business. The court documents also show text messages that reveal a rate of $300 per hour for one woman and $500 per hour for two women.

On Monday, an undercover detective arrested Harenza after agreeing to meet with her at a Woodbury hotel. At the same time, authorities searched the Wayzata home where they also found Turner in a car with two high school students -- one of whom was a minor who told police Turner had been trying to recruit her. Turner later admitted to police he was running the prostitution ring and had also taught Harenza "the game."

Turner faces felony counts including aiding and abetting a racketeering enterprise, aiding and abetting to engage in business of concealing criminal proceeds, engaging in sex trafficking of individual under 18 years old and promoting prostitution of an individual.

Harenza faces a charge of aiding and abetting a racketeering enterprise and a charge of aiding and abetting to engage in business of concealing criminal proceeds.
 

© 2017 KARE-TV


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