Alleged Bay Area Brothel Bandits Arrested On Murder, Sexual Assault Charges

SAN JOSE (CBS SF) — Three alleged members of a gang that targeted Bay Area brothels were in custody and two others remained at large Wednesday in a crime spree that involved a murder, kidnapping, several sexual assaults and robberies, authorities said.

San Jose police said 28-year-old An Yan, 27-year-old Lin Tao and 36-year-old Panpan Huang traveled to Northern California to go on the crime spree that spanned two days late in September.

The three have been taken into custody by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department and were being held in Los Angeles County Jail on murder, assault with a deadly weapon, conspiracy, robbery, kidnapping and sexual assault charges.

A collaborative investigation between the San Jose Police Department, Milpitas Police Department, South San Francisco Police Department and Fremont Police Department determined that there were four cases between September 27 and September 29 involving the same suspects.

San Jose police said that on the night of September 28 officers responded to a person shot in the 300 block of Elan Village Lane.

Arriving officers located an adult male victim suffering from at least one gunshot wound at an apartment complex.

The victim, later identified as Xingjian Li, of San Gabriel was transported to a local hospital where he was pronounced deceased a short time later.

The men are accused of murdering Li just after 8:40 p.m. Police said they killed him execution-style.

Between Sept. 27-29, the gang allegedly targeted Bay Area brothels on a robbery and sexual assault spree.

On September 27, Milpitas police officers responded to a suspicious circumstance call in the 500 block of Murphy Ranch Road in Milpitas. Arriving officers located a female victim who reported being robbed and sexually assaulted.

A few hours later, another female victim was allegedly robbed and sexually assaulted in the 100 block of McLellan Drive in South San Francisco. That victim, however, didn’t report the incident until two days later.

On September 28, Fremont police officers responded to a home invasion robbery in the city of Fremont. Arriving officers located three female victims who reported being robbed at gunpoint. One of the victims also reported being sexually assaulted.

On September 29, South San Francisco police officers responded to a robbery call in 100 block of McLellan Drive in South San Francisco. Arriving officers located a female victim who reported being robbed and sexually assaulted at gunpoint on Sept 27th.

At least four of those locations were determined to be operating brothels.

Detectives were asking for the public’s assistance in identifying and locating two suspects. They can be seen in the video below:

Police said one suspect is described as a Chinese male, 25-30 years-old, 5′ 10″ to 5′ 11″, 160-170 lbs., shaved head, last seen wearing a school varsity type jacket – blue in color with tan sleeves.

The second suspect at large is described as a Chinese male, 35-38 years-old, 6′ 2″, 250 lbs., black straight medium length hair, last seen wearing black aviator sun glasses, black t-shirt, black shorts and black tennis shoes.

Follow up investigation determined that there may be additional victims of similar crimes and they are being asked to contact their local agencies. Anyone with information is asked to contact Detective Sergeant Raul Martinez or Detective Brian Meeker of the San Jose Police Department’s Homicide Unit at (408) 277-5283.

TM and © Copyright 2017 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Bay City News Service contributed to this report.

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