• Owners, operators of crime-riddled Tukwila motels plead guilty, motels will be sold

    By: KIRO 7 STAFF


    TUKWILA, Wash. - The final two owners and managers of motels raided in late August pleaded guilty Tuesday to conspiracy to maintain drug-involved premises, U.S. Attorney Jenny A. Durkan said.

    PHOTOS: Feds raid motels for prostitution, drugs

    Jaspal Singh, 37, and Kulwinder Saroya, 42, both of SeaTac, admitted they knowingly operated drug-involved premises at the Travelers Choice Motel and Great Bear Motor Inn and that they profited from the drug activity there.

    The two men admitted they would collect or would direct their staff to collect a $10 entry fee for those coming on the property seeking drugs or sexual services. The owners or the managers would take the money and direct the customer to rooms to purchase drugs or sex, police said.

    The men also admitted that they collected additional rental fees from the dealer or sex worker based on how many customers were sent to the room over the course of the day.

    They agreed to forfeit the two motels, their Seatac home, more than $265,000 seized from their home and bank accounts and a 2007 Mercedes Bernz.

    The two motels, as well as The Boulevard Motel, will be sold by the U.S. Marshals Service. 

    “We will use all of our tools to seize criminal proceeds, protect the public and hold people accountable,” said Durkan.

    “Since we shut these motels, the number of police calls to the immediate area has dropped by one-third,” Durkan said. “These defendants profited by knowingly operating motels that were a blight on the community, creating an unsafe environment and soaking up police resources to the detriment of the community. It is fully appropriate that this prosecution take the profit out of these criminal activities.”

    A third defendant, Lakhvir Pawar, 41, pleaded guilty last week.

    All three men will be sentenced by U.S. District Judge John C. Coughenour on Feb. 28, 2014.

    The government has agreed to recommend no more than a year in prison for each defendant, but the judge is free to impose any sentence up to the maximum 20 years allowed by law.

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