Trial set in sexual assault case against Cloquet massage therapist

Shuwen Liang, while working at Hong Kong Spa, was accused of sexually assaulting a client in August 2021.

File: Carlton County Jail aerial
The Carlton County Courthouse, left, and jail in Carlton.
Steve Kuchera / 2019 file / Pine Journal
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CARLTON — A man accused of sexually assaulting a woman during a massage at the Hong Kong Spa in 2021 is scheduled for a trial May 1.

Shuwen Liang, 54, of Cloquet, has been charged with a felony third-degree criminal sexual conduct and if convicted could face 15 years in prison, a $30,000 fine or both.

Shuwen Liang

According to the criminal complaint, the woman said she was having sciatic nerve issues, so she scheduled a massage with Liang at the spa.

The woman stated she had prior massages with Liang, but at the August 2021 appointment, the woman said Liang tried to arouse her. She told authorities she "freaked out" about what was happening and her body froze, according to the complaint.

When she asked Liang what he was doing, he allegedly apologized and left the room.


A pretrial hearing is scheduled for Jan. 20.

The justice center project will be funded through a 0.5% sales tax over the next 30 years or until $60 million is collected.

Dylan covers the local governments of Cloquet and Carlton County, as well as the Esko and Wrenshall school boards for the Cloquet Pine Journal.
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