The investigation began in December 2013, when an employee contacted the police about the nonpayment of wages, according to an affidavit for the search warrant obtained from the Fairfax Circuit Court. Since then, Fairfax County’s new human trafficking unit interviewed other reported victims, all of whom have allegedly been deprived of up to $500,000 in nonpayments. Last Wednesday, detectives conducted a search, seizing files, electronic records and listing abduction and willful refusal to pay wages as potential offenses, but no charges against Spa World owners have been filed.
A 60-year-old Korean worker shed light on the horrid conditions. He told authorities that he was recruited from San Francisco as a body scrubber by Spa World’s manager. He practiced ddaemiri, a common exfoliation treatment offered in the bathing areas of the spa. When he arrived, the manager confiscated his shoes and luggage, according to court records, and he was not allowed to leave the premises.
Forced to sleep on the floor, he later relocated to an apartment owned by the spa, which was already occupied by other employees. Other court records show that some workers also live inside Spa World’s unfurnished room.
Despite the slavery charges and the anti-trans discrimination, Spa World still seems to be a hot spot for gay men to meet via Craigslist.
A 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals ruling could have wide impacts for LGBTQ folks who believe they’ve been discriminated against in the workplace. While the ruling upheld it was still not against the law to discriminate against folks because of their sexuality, it did recognize sexuality under “sex” in line with anti-sex discrimination laws. Check [...]