Multiple agencies searched two local massage parlors today after receiving complaints employees were offering sexual favors for money.
Portage County Sheriff David W. Doak confirmed that members of the Portage County Drug Task Force, Portage County Sheriff's Office, North Canton Police Department, Stark Metro Narcotics, U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the Canton Office of the FBI executed search warrants at The Massage Center at 1292 E. Waterloo Road in Suffield Township and The Affordable Massage Center at 1320 Maple St. in North Canton in Stark County.
Both are owned by John Richard and Adale M Ceroni, whose last known address is 5691 Governors Ave. N.W., Jackson Township, in Stark County, according to Doak.
According to Doak, his office received several complaints of prostitution occurring at The Massage Center from individuals who believed they were paying for the services of a licensed massage therapist who would perform a therapeutic massage.
These complainants instead learned that employees were offering sexual favors as part of the massage therapy.
Portage County Drug Task Force investigators identified the owners as the Ceronis, who also owned The Affordable Massage Center, a similar business in North Canton.
Portage County Drug Task Force investigators, along with North Canton detectives through their investigation identified several females who were advertising massage services on Backpage.com and Craigslist who were operating out of both the Portage County and North Canton locations.
Backpage.com is also where ads for Studio54, the alleged brothel on Northfield Road in Bedford, were posted, according to the charges against Bedford Municipal Court Judge Harry Jacob III.
Read that story: Prosecutor: Judge looking for prostitutes while on bench
Investigators who were reviewing the ads were surprised with the content of the reviews that were written in response to the services that were performed at both locations.
The search warrants were executed starting at 1:30 p.m., and the search was completed shortly after 5 p.m.
Three pickup truck loads of evidence were confiscated. The evidence collected included 14 massage tables, a computer, miscellaneous paperwork and records, and some adult videos.
The execution of this search warrant took place at the same time the Portage County Sheriff's Office and the Portage County Drug Task Force executed a similar search warrant at The Massage Center.
No arrests have been made in this joint investigation; however, law enforcement anticipates that arrest warrants will be obtained in the near future.