SAN FRANCISCO - Two San Francisco sisters accused of running a sex trafficking ring out of the city's western neighborhoods entered not guilty pleas today to more than a dozen charges.
Qiao "Judy" He, 37, and her sister Gaineng He, 36, pleaded not guilty in San Francisco Superior Court to a combined 16 counts of pimping, pandering and conspiracy.
The pair is out of custody on $50,000 bail and that amount was not raised today by Judge Tracie Brown over objections from San Francisco prosecutors.
The women's passports were confiscated during the hearing, according to the district attorney's office.
The women were arrested June 9 following a five-month investigation with the state attorney general's office, San Francisco police and the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's Homeland Security Investigations unit.
The investigation started in January when sex trafficking was allegedly happening in the city's Richmond and Sunset districts.
Undercover investigators discovered "johns" were allegedly paying up to $200 to have sex with young Asian women at brothels.
Agents were told "new girls" were brought into the brothels every Sunday, according to the attorney general's Office.
On May 7, search warrants were executed at four San Francisco locations.
The sisters' next court appearances are scheduled for July 7.
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