Ventnor firefighter arrested in prostitution ring involving NFL owner Kraft
A Ventnor firefighter was among two dozen men charged with New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft as part of a prostitution sting in Florida.
Joseph Daniels, 36, is charged with soliciting another to commit prostitution, a first-degree misdemeanor that can carry as long as a year in jail , a $5,000 civil penalty and 100 hours of community service.
Daniels allegedly was one of 25 customers — including Kraft — of the Orchids of Asia Day Spa in Jupiter, Florida, that was part of prostitution sting.
“These cases aren’t about any one defendant or any group of defendants,” State Attorney Dave Aronberg said in a news release. “The larger picture, which we must all confront, is the cold reality that many prostitutes in cases like this are victims, often lured into this country with promises of a better life, only to be forced to live and work in a sweatshop or a brothel, subject to force, fraud or coercion.”
Alleged owner Hua Zhang and admitted spa manager Lei Wang are each charged with 26 counts of soliciting another to commit prostitution and renting space to be used for prostitution. Wang also is named as the woman in the room with Kraft during both of his visits.
The investigation began in October, and included covert surveillance cameras installed under a “sneak-and-peek” warrant, according to court records.
Daniels visited the spa at about 5:15 p.m. Jan. 19, where the cameras captured him paying Wang in cash and then being led to a room.
There, he got undressed and Wang began giving him a massage. Then, an unidentified woman came in the room, and ultimately performed a sex act, the charges allege.
Afterward, he got dressed, removed some cash from his wallet and left.
Daniels is scheduled to be arraigned March 27.
He was one of only two people whose mug shots were registered with the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office, likely because neither is a Florida resident.
Daniels, who owns a landscaping company, did not respond to a call seeking comment.
Fire Chief Mike Cahill said it’s a personnel issue that is being reviewed by the department and city.