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Boyfriend of arrested Martin County spa manager fighting to get $54,000, jewelry back from investigators

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Posted at 10:00 PM, Apr 09, 2019
and last updated 2019-04-09 15:53:44-04

MARTIN COUNTY, Fla. — One of the spa managers charged in a major prostitution ring at day spas across South Florida is expected in court Wednesday morning.

Investigators said 48-year-old Lixia Zhu ran illegal operations at spas out of Martin County.

Zhu is due in court Wednesday at 8:30 a.m. for a motions hearing.

According to court records, her boyfriend, John McNulty, is asking the Martin County Sheriff's Office to return his personal property that was seized as a result of a search warrant.

RELATED: More than $500K, luxury cars, seized in prostitution stings

In court paperwork, McNulty claims that property belongs to him and should not have been seized. He has not been charged in the case.

The items include more than $54,000 in cash, an iPhone, laptop, safe, gold wedding band, various documents, and a Pennsylvania driver's license.

Zhu's attorneys filed an objection to McNulty's motion, claiming some of the money and documents belong to her.

RELATED: Sneak-and-peek warrants unsealed in Martin County spa busts

Zhu is charged with multiple felonies including engaging in prostitution, permitting prostitution, operating a house of prostitution, deriving support from proceeds of prostitution, money laundering, and racketeering. Two additional money laundering charges were dropped on March 29.

As part of the widespread investigation, the State Attorney's Office said New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft was one of the men who solicited sex at Orchids of Asia Day Spa in Jupiter.

Kraft, who's pleaded not guilty to the charges against him, is now fighting to get surveillance video evidence thrown out.

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