In a massive arrest that could be the plot of a Hollywood movie, or at least an episode of Law and Order: SVU, immigration and law enforcement officials rounded up 20 people in connection with a human trafficking operation.
The federal prosecutors in Downtown Manhattan allege that four members of the Gambino crime family and three members of the Bonnano crime family worked with Russians in order to bring Eastern European women into the country. The gang allegedly would then exploit the women and force them into prostitution and to strip at clubs, according to NY1.
Authorities conducted the raid early Wednesday morning, hitting some alleged prostitution hotspots. Cheetah Club on 43rd Street in Midtown Manhattan and Gallagher's in Long Island City, Queens were the two establishments raided by officials, according to NY1.
A worker at Cheetah Club did not wish to give a comment to IBTimes regarding the issue and a worker a Gallagher's claimed he was unaware of the raid.
The 20 defendants are facing several charges. That includes harboring and transporting illegal alien, marriage fraud, and visa fraud.