Beaufort Co. woman charged with operating brothel near childcare facility

Source: Live 5
Published: Oct. 13, 2021 at 4:07 PM EDT|Updated: Oct. 13, 2021 at 5:29 PM EDT
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CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - Agents with the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division say a Beaufort County woman is charged with operating a massage parlor that permitted commercial sex activity.

Lina Tan Driggers, 58, was charged with operating a brothel and commission of offenses within 100 yards of a childcare facility, SLED spokesman Tommy Crosby said.

Driggers’ business, Oriental Massage Therapy in Charleston County, operated within close proximity to a public child care facility, Crosby said.

An affidavit states Summerville Police detectives requested SLED open an investigation into the facility.

The Charleston Police Department received an anonymous Crime Stoppers complaint in February 2020 from someone who identified themself as a family member of an employee of the business, and alleged that when their family member began working as a masseuse, their passport was taken and they were forced to complete sexual acts with clients.

Court documents state multiple surveillance operations were conducted between March 16, 2020, and June 28, 2021, during which clientele for the business appeared to be “all adult males” who “frequently exceeded the normal allotted times for similarly advertised services at reputable massage locations.”

On June 28, 2021, detectives conducted lawful traffic stops on customers leaving the business and one customer told detectives he frequented the business “because it was known for the solicitation of prostitution,” the affidavit states.

Agents conducted an undercover purchase operation at the business on July 8, 2021, in which an undercover agent requested a 30-minute-long massage, court documents state. Investigators said the undercover agent was able to negotiate a sex act with the employee business for a previously tipped amount, but told the employee he “changed his mind” after the verbal agreement and exited the business, ending the operation.

Court documents also state that on Oct. 6, SLED executed a search warrant on the business and encountered a client of the business who was leaving. That client told investigators he paid for a sexual act from two of the employees.

Driggers was booked at the Al Cannon Detention Center.

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