Donald Trump has been largely quiet on the arrest of friend Robert Kraft for allegedly visiting a Florida spa that was a front for prostitution, but now a viral photo of Trump and the spa’s original owner has thrust the president in the middle of the controversy.
On Friday, the Miami Herald published the picture showing Trump at a Super Bowl watch party at his Mar-a-Lago resort, smiling alongside 45-year-old Li Yang. As the report noted, Yang is a “self-made entrepreneur from China” who founded a chain of Asian day spas in southern Florida that are now under investigation as a front for human trafficking and prostitution.
“Nineteen days after Trump and Yang posed together while rooting for the Patriots, authorities would charge Kraft with soliciting prostitution at a spa in Jupiter that Yang had founded more than a decade earlier,” the report noted.
The report noted that Yang had since sold the spa where Robert Kraft was arrested, and the business owner was not charged in the sex trafficking sting that led to dozens of arrests and the closure of 10 different Asian spas in southern Florida. But the report added that the spa was long known as a front for prostitution, and Yang’s family still owns several other spas in southern Florida that are discussed online as “one of the best places in West Palm Beach” to receive sexual services in exchange for money, the report noted.
Trump watched the Super Bowl with the founder of the spa where Patriots owner Robert Kraft was busted in prostitution sting, the @MiamiHerald reports.— Steve Contorno (@scontorno) March 8, 2019
The party was at Trump’s West Palm Beach country club. https://t.co/aPnqN50uEX
The report added that Yang has had very close connections to Donald Trump and the White House in the past, including contributing more than $42,000 to the political action committee known as Trump Victory and $16,000 directly to Trump’s campaign. Last year, she was invited to the White House for an event hosted by the Asian American and Pacific Islander Initiative, the Miami Herald noted.
After Robert Kraft’s arrest last month, Donald Trump said he was “very surprised” at the news about the New England Patriots owner and his longtime friend.
“Well it’s very sad, I was very surprised to see it. He’s proclaimed his innocence totally, but I’m very surprised to see it,” Trump said at the time (via NBC Sports). He has not since commented on Kraft’s charges.
Kraft faces two misdemeanor charges in relation to visits to the Florida spas, one of which allegedly took place on the same day the New England Patriots were playing the Kansas City Chiefs in the AFC Championship Game, as noted in a previous Inquisitr report.
Donald Trump has not yet responded to the report about his appearance with Li Yang.