Ex-car Dealership Manager Admits to Running Dallas Brothels on the Side

Jeffrey Wittman helped car buyers finance new vehicles at a local car dealership.He served other customers at the Dallas brothels he owned and ran, according to federal authorities.Wittman, 53, of Rockwall, pleaded guilty in federal court on Tuesday to prostitution-related charges.Wittman and his company, JBJ Services LLC, admitted to owning and operating at least two businesses that were fronts for illegal brothels, according to court records. He pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to violate the Travel Act.Wittman, who has been in custody since his March arrest, faces up to five years in federal prison and a maximum fine of $250,000. He agreed to forfeit the building that was used to run one of the brothels and will have to pay the government at least $200,000 as part of his plea deal, authorities said. JBJ Services faces a fine of up to $500,000. The company also has agreed to pay the government at least $200,000, officials said. Wittman is scheduled to be sentenced in January. He was working as a finance manager at Trophy Nissan until his arrest, the U.S. attorney's office said. A manager at the dealership could not be reached for comment.Wittman and his conspirators ran the brothels from January 2014 through February 2017, the U.S. attorney's office said. Two of them were called Sakura, at the 7000 block of Envoy Court, and The Palace, at the 2000 block of North Stemmons Freeway.Sakura was open 24 hours a day, and the women who worked there were "required to line up for each customer" so he could chose one "regardless of the time of day or night," an FBI complaint said. "Most, if not all, of the customers were males who arrived alone and would spend approximately 30 to 60 minutes in Sakura before leaving," the complaint said. The defendants wired money from the brothel operations from U.S. bank accounts to South Korea, the indictment said."There was a policy at Sakura that if a customer had at least $100, the women would have to provide sex upon request," court records said. "If customers did not have enough money, there was an ATM at the end of the main hallway inside Sakura where they could withdraw cash."At the time, Wittman was on probation for a 2007 conviction in Dallas County state court for engaging in organized crime, court records show. In that case, Wittman and others used stolen identities to buy about 40 high-priced diamonds. He and an accomplice found credit card information by rummaging through Dumpsters located behind businesses, court records show.They then sold the diamonds, earning more than $170,000, court records said.The Dallas County district attorney's office has filed a motion to revoke Wittman's probation in that case, according to records.Also charged in the federal prostitution case is Wittman's wife, Chin Young Song, 50. The couple were married in 2013, court records say, and their prostitution scheme began the following month.She and Puna Kim, 54, are awaiting trial. Their attorneys could not be reached for comment.Another defendant, Chongok Ellsworth, 62, who lives in Georgia, is scheduled to plead guilty to the conspiracy, authorities say.Ellsworth lived at Sakura, and she recruited women to work at a Dallas brothel, court records said.To help with the illegal operation, Song used her "knowledge and expertise" from running brothels in the Philadelphia area, according to the indictment. She also agreed to have sex with an undercover police officer for money in November 2015, the indictment said.Song was convicted in 2008 in Philadelphia of federal racketeering charges related to prostitution, court records say. In that case, she ran brothels disguised as massage parlors from about 2001 to 2006. Investigators sound evidence of women living at The Palace, which had "a room full of beds, makeup, mirrors and personal affects," the FBI complaint said. Wittman would visit "often" during the day, the complaint said.Advertisements for Sakura and The Palace were posted online with photos of "scantily clad and partially-nude women in sexual poses," court records said. One ad for Sakura said, "If you're looking for a top quality Asian relaxation, you found it.""All new hot sexy beautiful international beauties waiting for you," another ad for the brothel said. "Hot and very friendly. You won't be disappointed."  Continue reading...

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