A.G. Schneiderman Announces Felony Guilty Plea Of Manhattan-Based Prostitution And Drug Ring Boss
Hyun Ok Yoon Ung Faces Up To 3 Years In State Prison For Running Illicit Operation That Sold “Party Packs” To High-End Clientele; Forfeits $700K In Illegal Proceeds
Schneiderman: My Office Will Pursue And Punish Those Who Exploit Women And Pollute Our Communities With Deadly Narcotics
NEW YORK Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman today announced the guilty plea of Hyun Ok Yoon Ung, the lead defendant charged in connection with a criminal ring which sold so-called “party packs,” involving cocaine and prostitutes, and laundering the illegal proceeds through front businesses that included a clothing wholesaler, a wig wholesaler, a limousine service and a beauty supply wholesaler. A joint undercover investigation by the Attorney General’s Organized Crime Task Force and the New York Police Department busted 18 individuals, including Hyun Ok Yoon Ung, in January, at a time when the gang was marketing its services to a high-end clientele coming to the New York metropolitan area for the Super Bowl.
Hyun Ok Yoon Ung, 41, of Woodbury, New York, pled guilty in Manhattan Supreme Court today to Promoting Prostitution in the Third Degree, a “D” felony. She faces a prison term of 1 to 3 years when she is sentenced on October 24. She has also agreed to forfeit more than $700,000, proceeds from her criminal business.
“Those who poison our communities with drugs and exploit women by promoting prostitution will be held accountable,” Attorney General Schneiderman said. “My office will continue to work with our partners in law enforcement on multi-agency investigations like this one to keep our communities safe.”
Hyun Ok Yoon Ung was arrested as part of “Operation Out of Bounds,” an 11-month investigation utilizing undercover investigators, physical and electronic surveillance and analysis of business records. The Attorney General’s Organized Crime Task Force and the New York Police Department determined that the defendant and her co-conspirators, targeted wealthy out-of-town customers as prospective clients, especially before and during large events in the tri-state area. For example, just 10 days before this year’s the Super Bowl, a text message was blasted to frequent customers noting that “new sexy & beautiful girls R in town waiting for u.” The criminal ring also promoted its prostitution business with numerous advertisements on the internet and public access television. In addition to selling sex, the ring sold cocaine to the same customers. Transcripts of conversations that were intercepted by electronic surveillance revealed that the ring used various code names for cocaine, including “party,” “powder,” “maek” or “Maekjoo,” a Korean term for beer and “Soojaebi,” a Korean noodle and vegetable soup. Intercepted conversations also revealed that prostitutes would bring cocaine with them to meetings with johns who had ordered the drugs in advance. This is what they referred to as “party.”
Cases against the other defendants are pending.
The investigation was directed by OCTF Senior Investigator Joel Poccia, OCTF Supervising Investigator Paul Grzegorski and Downstate OCTF Deputy Chief Christopher Vasta. Dominick Zarrella is chief of the Attorney General’s Investigations Bureau. New York Police Department Detective Walter Harkins, Sergeant Sunghoon Kim and Lieutenant Michael Morales of the Vice Enforcement Major Case Team worked on the case, as did Homeland Security Investigations Special Agent Jeffrey Bashara, Group Supervisor Michael Conlon and Deputy Special Agent In Charge Anthony Scandiffio.
The case was prosecuted by OCTF Assistant Deputy Attorney General Howard Feldberg and Deputy Bureau Chief Tarek Rahman, with assistance from Deputy Attorney General Peri Alyse Kadanoff. The Executive Deputy Attorney General for Criminal Justice is Kelly Donovan.