-By Joseph Domelowicz
For the Transcript
Winthrop police responding to a report of a disturbance on Shore Drive late Sunday night arrested one suspect on prostitution and petty theft charges.Â This arrest has led to an investigation into human trafficking and a hold order from the federal Immigration and Naturalization Services (INS) department, because the suspect is a foreign national.
Yun Chai Chen, a 37-year old Chinese national, who has reportedly been living in the Malden area was taken into custody by Winthrop police and charged with furnishing a false name to police, larceny under $250 and sexual conduct for a fee, as well as two outstanding warrants from other departments.
According to the police report, responding officers interviewed the victim, who told police that the suspect had been in his home â€œfor a date he had arranged over the phone,â€ and that once in his home â€œshe had removed all her clothes,â€ at which time he realized she was not the woman he had arranged the date with and changed his mind.
The victim also told officers that Chen had then grabbed $160 in $20 bills off a desk and fled the home. She was attempting to leave the scene in a car driven by another man when police arrived. During a search of the back seat of the vehicle, where Chen had been sitting, police discovered the $160 in $20 bills hidden in a cup holder. The victim identified the money as his.
After being placed into custody and booked on the above charges, the case got really interesting when the INS became involved.
â€œBasically, sheâ€™s being held on an INS detainer, because she is a Chinese national,â€ explained Chief Terence Delehanty. â€œCertainly, we are concerned about the possibility of human trafficking in this case, as there is a group operating in the area that is involved in that on the North Shore. Whether or not she is a victim of that, is still under investigation.â€
Police were not able to provide any additional details about the man who was driving the car Chen was found in.