SARASOTA, Fla. -- Four people have been arrested and a dump truck was seized during prostitution operations in Sarasota. Among the arrests were a hotelier along the North Tamiami Trail.
According to Sarasota Police, On May 13th, the Street Crimes Unit, in conjunction with the Narcotics Unit, conducted a prostitution operation targeting individuals soliciting prostitutes. The operation was conducted at two different locations on North Tamiami Trail and led to three arrests for Solicitation of Prostitution:
• 54-year-old Manuel D. Enriquez of Cape Coral
• 45-year-old Joaevan C. West of Sarasota
• 59-year-old Jay T. Wilson of Middlebury, Indiana
In addition, three vehicles were seized under city ordinance including a full-size dump truck.
On May 7th, 33-year-old Mehul Patel of Sarasota was arrested and charged with renting space to be used for lewdness/prostitution, prohibiting prostitution and related acts and deriving support from the proceeds of prostitution.
In February, the Sarasota Police Department Street Crimes Unit began an investigation at the Sarasota Airport Hotel at 4900 North Tamiami Trail in Sarasota. Information was received that indicated employees at the hotel were knowingly renting rooms for prostitution, and indicated that employees were acting as "look outs" for people engaged in prostitution and narcotics related activities, warning them of police presence on the property.
An undercover operation was conducted at the Sarasota Airport Hotel in response to this information, leading to Patel's was arrested on May 7.