Court documents allege the defendants engaged in various types of immigration fraud to recruit their female employees, many of whom had valid student visas. Officials say the suspects used fake documents and set up fraudulent marriages.
The suspects are identified as 42-year-old Jian "David" Guo of Arcadia, 53-year-old Huagui "Candy" Lotto of Rowland Heights, Lotto's husband, 47-year-old Phillip Fu and 45-year-old Yibin Zhang of Monterey Park.
The four were arrested Saturday evening by Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents.
Lotto and Zhang are charged with conspiracy to import and harbor immigrants for prostitution.
Fu is charged with conspiracy to commit marriage fraud.
Guo is charged with pimping and pandering.
The charge of importing and harboring an immigrant for purposes of prostitution carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison.
Conspiracy to commit marriage fraud is punishable by up to five years in prison.
The state charges carry a maximum sentence of seven years and four months.