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Christopher Wilde
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Thursday, May 15, 2008

Prostitution In the News

By Christopher Wilde

In preparation of my upcoming article it seems only fitting to speak briefly about some national cases of prostitution making headlines.  Yesterday Temeka Rachelle Lewis pleaded guilty, by way of an agreement with Federal prosecutors, for being the booking agent and money laundering for the Emperors Club.  The Emperors Club is the call girl service by which former New York Governor Eliot Spitzer arranged his rendezvous with call girl Asley Dupre.  So far neither Spitzer or Dupre have not been charged.  A possible charge pending against Spitzer is a violation of the Mann Act since he conspired to have Ms. Dupre meet him in Washington D.C.

Teneka Rachelle and Marc Agnifilo

A little background on Ms. Lewis.  Friends describe her as bookish.  She is an English Major from the University of Virginia, she lives in Virginia with her family.  According to her defense attorney Marc Agnifilo she was working as a waitress in Brooklyn and responded to a newspaper add to be a "scheduler for the Emperor's Club.  Three other co-defendants have been charged as well, an alleged part time booker Tanya Hollander, 36, a nutritionist, Mark Brener, a 62-year-old Israeli émigré who's been charged with running the ring, and Cecil Suwal, 23, alleged to have run the day to day operations.

Those operations were extensive as according to investigators the ring provided prostitutes in New York, Washington, Los Angeles, Miami, London and Paris and charged $1000 to $5,500 an hour.

Brandy Britton Washington DC is the place where another infamous madame Deborah Jeane Palfrey had a business allegedly serving a powerful D.C. elite.  Mrs. Palfrey died two weeks ago in an apparent suicide, the same fate as one of her alleged employees former University of Maryland, Baltimore County, professor Brandy Britton, who committed suicide in January before she was scheduled to go to trial.

These are the high end stories, but throughout the country there have been many investigations and arrests of late associated with strip-bar/go-go dancers working on the side as prostitutes.  Another case of note broke in Albuquerque, New Mexico yesterday when the Secret Service and police arrested 47-year-old Bobby McMullin in an online prostitution ring in which he charged up to $1200 per hour for the service.

Capping all of this off is Gene Simmons, that's right of the band Kiss and who also has a very entertaining show on A&E (Gene Simmon's Family Jewels), who will be coming out on July 8th with a book entitled, Ladies of the Night, which is billed as a personal and historical perspective on prostitution.

Finally, even here in Utah, an alleged prostitution ring running through an escort service called the Doll House has made frequent headlines over the last year, has cost one of Salt Lake's finest prosecutors his job (he's appealing), and a candidate for office dropped her run because her ex-fiancé operated the escort service.

Gene Simmons Everywhere you look smart, college educated, people find themselves involved in prostitution.  While Gene Simmon's is not considered a great moral philosopher he know's how to work the media.  Recently he appeared on the Dr. Phil show in a segment, "Dr. Phil Now"  regarding the paparazzi.  You can expect that in anticipation of his coming book he will be making the rounds of show's like Dr. Phil's.  The result is that this summer there is going to be a strong national dialogue about prostitution.

However I will have my story about an unrelated incident of prostitution shortly and we'll be able to start that dialogue right here.

Link: The New Prostitution

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