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Queens man convicted of promoting prostitution gets prison sentence

A Queens man who helped set up meetings between clients and prostitutes in the Town of Tonawanda as well as in other cities and states was sentenced Monday by U.S. District Judge Lawrence J. Vilardo to 21 months in prison.

Cheng Qi Li, 29, of Flushing was previously convicted of conspiracy to use interstate facilities to promote prostitution and to transport individuals in interstate commerce with intent that such individuals would engage in prostitution.

According to prosecutors, Li was part of a business that sent victims to cities and states across the eastern United States to engage in sex acts. As part of that business, Li and others posted advertisements on Backpage.com to set up meetings between clients and prostitutes in the Town of Tonawanda.

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