CHINO >> Two victims of human trafficking were rescued and a Los Angeles man was arrested after authorities say they discovered a trafficking den at a medical warehouse in Chino on Wednesday.
Luis Flores Lopez, 39, was arrested on suspicion of felony pimping and pandering. He is being held at West Valley Detention Center in Rancho Cucamonga in lieu of $100,000 bail, San Bernardino County sheriff’s officials said.
The San Bernardino County Human Trafficking Task Force learned several advertisements on Backpage.com — an online classified site that has been connected to instances of human trafficking — listed a commercial medical building in the 12500 block of 10th Street in Chino as a connection site, according to a news release.
“Investigators observed a high volume of males going to and from the business,” the statement said. “After further investigation, it was established that investigators believed victims were being trafficked for the purpose of sex inside the location.”
After obtaining a search warrant, detectives rescued two victims and detained two men authorities say were at the warehouse to pay for sex. They were later released pending further investigation, officials said.
Lopez was also found inside and arrested, sheriff’s authorities said.
Investigators say websites like Backpage.com allow traffickers to list women offering sexual services. According to FAIR Girls, an organization that offers safe housing and services to survivors of human trafficking, 90 percent of the young women and girls they serve — some as young as 14 — were listed on Backpage.
The company has said it believes the company is on firm legal ground and works hard to report abuses of the website.
The Chino investigation is ongoing.
Detectives believe there are other victims and ask anyone with information to contact the San Bernardino County Human Trafficking Task Force at 909-387-8400. Anyone wishing to remain anonymous may contact WeTip at 888-78-CRIME or www.wetip.com.