Huron Police shutdown prostitution ring

HURON, Calif.

Huron Police say a tip from the California Highway Patrol about a possible kidnapping is what led them to an apartment down in Wasco. The investigation brought them back to Huron, where, for the first time, police broke up a prostitution ring in the small city.

32-year-old Jesus Garcia was arrested last week in Huron. The information police first received sent them from Huron to Wasco, in Kern County. "That information then led to an apartment here where there was various girls staying there and prostituting," said Huron Police Sgt. Chad McMullin.

Neighbors told Action News a crime like prostitution just doesn't happen in Huron. They said the complex where the bust happened is full of families.

"Prostitution is always wrong you know," Hector Mena said. Mena lives nearby, with his grandmother. He said the apartment where the bust happened was always light up, well after everyone else went to sleep. "Especially like late hours, after bar hours," he said.

Police also arrested 30-year-old Claudia Santos and 26-year-old Jorge Vasquez in Wasco Friday morning. Both were charged with running the prostitution ring.

This time of year in Huron, for about 6 weeks, the city nearly doubles in size. An influx of migrant workers, police said, may be why the prostitutes and their pimps moved into the remote city.

"They talk amongst each other and move around state to state and wherever they need to work," Sgt. McMullin said.

Police said the people they busted may be connected to other rings outside of California. No actual prostitutes were arrested in this bust.

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