General Crime

Navneet “Nav” Maharaj Cited In Suspected Prostitution Activity At Two Salinas Motels

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Salinas police cited a 34-year-old man Wednesday on suspicion of operating a house of prostitution at two motels he owns on North Main Street in Salinas, according to a police commander.

Police issued Navneet “Nav” Maharaj a misdemeanor citation at 8:09 p.m. Wednesday for operating a house of ill fame at the Rodeo Inn and Star Motel at 1149 N. Main St., police Cmdr. Henry Gomez said.

Earlier that night, an officer who was monitoring the motels noticed 13 cars going into the parking lots of both businesses over a brief period of time, Gomez said.

Several people inside the cars in the motels’ parking lots admitted to police that they were there for purposes of prostitution, police said.

The Salinas Police Department received numerous complaints over the past several months about prostitution at the motels, which occupy the same property south of West Laurel Drive, Gomez said.

Officers were unable to get Maharaj, the owner of both businesses, to cooperate with the investigation into prostitution and other reported problems at the motels, according to Gomez.

Police then built a criminal case against Maharaj, who was aware of the prostitution operating out of his establishments and had allowed it to continue, Gomez said.

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