Kansas Sex Trafficing Trial Postponed

By: Greg Palmer
By: Greg Palmer

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) _ The federal trial of a couple accused of sex trafficking in Wichita remains in limbo after a last-minute request for a mental evaluation.

Jury selection had been scheduled to begin Monday afternoon for the trial of Gary H. Kidgell, of Waltham, Mass., and his wife, Wichita resident Yan Zhang, but it has been put on hold when U.S. District Judge Eric Melgren granted an oral motion by Zang's attorney for the mental evaluation.

An indictment charges them of sex trafficking by force, fraud or coercion. One count also charges Kidgell with harboring for financial gain an immigrant who was in the country unlawfully.

Kidgell and Zhang are accused of recruiting women from around the country to come to Wichita to work at massage parlors, then coercing them into prostitution. A woman who worked for them has pleaded guilty to a harboring count.

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