‘D.C. Madam’ Debra Palfrey Commits Suicide in Apparent Hanging according to Florida Police

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Thanks to Fox News for this article….flagranny2

Deborah Jeane Palfrey, the 52-year-old woman known as the “D.C. Madam,” committed suicide Thursday morning at her mother’s home in a trailer park in the Tampa area, Tarpon Springs Police told FOXNews.com.

Click here for photos.

“It was her, and she’s deceased,” said Frank Ruggiero, a public information officer with the Tarpon Springs Police Department. “There’s no question that it was a suicide.”

Palfrey apparently hanged herself with a nylon rope that she wrapped around a metal beam in a shed on the property, according to police.

Authorities said her 76-year-old mother, Blanche Palfrey, positively identified the dead woman as her daughter.

Deborah Jeane Palfrey was found guilty on April 15 by a D.C. jury on charges of racketeering and money laundering related to her operating a prostitution ring.

• ‘D.C. Madam’ Deborah Jeane Palfrey Found Guilty on All Counts

She had threatened to reveal the names of her clients — many believed to be high-profile political and business figures — if prosecutors went forward with their case.

Ruggiero said police arrived at the scene at 10:52 a.m. Thursday and Palfrey was pronounced dead a short while later.

She was reportedly staying at the mobile home of her mother Blanche, who awoke from a nap and searched the premises before noticing that a bicycle had been moved. She went to the shed to investigate and found her daughter hanging from a ceiling beam, according to police.

A man answering the phone at Blanche Palfrey’s residence who identified himself as a family spokesman said she wasn’t able to speak to the media.

“We have no comment at this time,” he told FOXNews.com. He declined to give his name.

A statement released earlier by Tarpon Springs Police said the victim was found in a small storage shed located on the west side of the mobile home.

“Handwritten notes were found on scene that describe the victim’s intention to take her life, and foul play does not appear to be involved,” said Capt. Jeffrey P. Young.

Pinellas County Medical Examiners will determine the official cause of death, and are working with the FBI on the case.

The medical examiner’s office said Thursday that it wasn’t releasing any information on the case.

Louisiana Sen. David Vitter and former deputy secretary of state Randall L. Tobias both were tied by investigators to Palfrey’s high-end prostitution ring.

She had repeatedly denied the escort service engaged in prostitution, saying that if any of the women engaged in sex acts for money, they did so without her knowledge.

Palfrey faced a maximum of 55 years in prison and was free pending her sentencing July 24.

Click here for more on this story from MyFOXTampa.com.

FOXNews.com’s Catherine Donaldson-Evans in New York and Sharon Liss in D.C. contributed to this report.

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Breaking News -New York Governor Eliot Spitzer Resigns

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Spitzer Resigns Effective Monday Amid Links to Prostitution Ring

NEW YORK —  New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer resigned in disgrace Wednesday after getting caught in a call-girl scandal that shattered his corruption-fighting, straight-arrow image, saying: “I cannot allow my private failings to disrupt the people’s work.”

Spitzer will be replaced by Lt. Gov. David Paterson, who becomes New York’s first black governor, effective Monday. Spitzer’s minute-long statement made no mention of whether he had reached a deal with federal prosecutors to avoid charges

For Spitzer’s apology continue here

Kelly Nolan – Missing Student Was Dealing With Issues Prior To Disappearance

UPDATED: 12:13 pm CDT July 6, 2007

MADISON, Wis. — The University of Wisconsin-Whitewater student missing for two weeks has been dealing with the recent deaths of her father and stepmother.

April Nolan is the sister of Kelly Nolan, 22, who vanished on June 23 when she became separated from friends after hitting some bars on State Street in downtown Madison.

April Nolan said that her and her sister’s stepmother died in May and their father died last year.

Kelly Nolan graduated from Waunakee High School and is described as a good student with a pleasant personality, who played sports and was fun-loving and creative.

But, Nolan also had her troubles. She was convicted of drunken driving twice in the last three years. Her driver’s license had been suspended, and she served 14 days in the Walworth County Jail after her second drunken driving offense.

Nolan planned to work in Madison for the summer. She worked at the Orpheum Lobby Restaurant on State Street for about a week in June, but she was apparently fired the Wednesday before she disappeared. The owner said that she didn’t have enough experience for the job.

Earlier this week, her family announced an unspecified reward for information regarding her disappearance.

Nolan is described as 5 feet 6 inches tall and weighs about 125 pounds. She has brown eyes and brown hair. Her sister said that on Saturday night, Kelly Nolan was wearing a green, sleeveless top with a scoop neck, a light pair of jeans and sandals with a heel and was carrying a slate gray purse.

Family and friends spent the Fourth of July holiday passing out fliers at Elver Park as part of their ongoing effort to get the word out about the missing 22-year-old, WISC-TV reported.

Nolan’s family and police are continuing to urge people to phone in tips to Crime Stoppers at 608-266-6014.

Online social network will help reveal sex offenders….

Published: May 16, 2007

MySpace, an online social network popular with teenagers, said in two statements yesterday that it was prepared to work with state attorneys general who have requested the identities of MySpace members who are known sex offenders.

But the company said its cooperation hinges on whether the state officials follow the law and subpoena the names, a step that a leader of the state attorneys general said was not necessary.

In its first statement, MySpace said it was “doing everything short of breaking the law to ensure that the information about these predators gets to the proper authorities.”

MySpace, a division of the News Corporation, said it would release information about its members as long as it was able to comply with the Electronic Communications Privacy Act. That law “prohibits us from disclosing the information they’re seeking without a subpoena,” the second statement said.

MySpace’s statement was interpreted as a rebuff by Richard Blumenthal, the attorney general of Connecticut and the co-chairman of a working group of 50 attorneys general.

“I do believe it is disingenuous and disappointing because much of the information that we have sought, specifically the numbers of convicted sex offenders on the site require no subpoena or any other compulsory process,” Mr. Blumenthal said. “We have a valid and viable need to know about convicted sexual offenders who may pose a threat to children.”

Mr. Blumenthal said that parole conditions for sex offenders ordinarily say that they cannot be in contact with children.

He said that Connecticut and other states do not require subpoenas for enforcing parole conditions. Mr. Blumenthal said he plans to convene a conference call in the next few days of the 50 attorneys general to decide how to respond to MySpace.

He said they would issue subpoenas, if need be.

Hemanshu Nigam MySpace’s chief security officer, said in an interview that the site had already taken down the profiles of thousands of sex offenders since the beginning of May when it began running its own database check.

“We’re hoping that we can work out the proper legal channel so we can provide this information to the attorneys general,” Mr. Nigam said. “The attorneys general have a particular goal, which is to try to do something against online predators, and we do too, which is to try to keep them off our site.”

Mr. Nigam said that the company had aggressively tried to crack down on sex offenders. Late last year, the company hired Sentinel Tech, a company in New York, to design a system to compare its 175 million member records with public sex offender records.

“In six months, we are the only company in the country that has stepped up in an area that faces the entire Internet industry,” Mr. Nigam said. “We did it with our own costs.”

Information source: nytimes.com

Oklahoma Man Accused of Trying to Sell Children on Net

Monday, May 07, 2007

CHICKASHA, Okla. — Police arrested a man accused of attempting to sell two children, ages 1 and 5, over the Internet for sex.

050707_jasontoddburns.jpgJason Todd Burns, 25, told investigators he had a conversation in an Internet chat room and promised to procure the children for a New York man for $5,000, said Grady County Assistant District Attorney Lesley March.

“His admission was that he did engage in a chat room conversation and that the conversation dealt with Burns arranging for and quoting a price for the other individual to have sex with a 1- and a 5-year-old girl,” March said.

March said it was unclear if Burns offered his own children for sale.

“That is still under investigation,” March said. “We know that he has two children who reside in the Comanche County area. He also has a stepchild in Chickasha who would fall into this age range.”

Several children were removed from Burns’ Chickasha home, said OSBI spokeswoman Jessica Brown.

Burns was being held in the Grady County jail Monday and was scheduled to be arraigned Tuesday, March said.

Prosecutors plan to file a charge of transmitting information by computer for purposes of instigating sexual contact with a minor, a felony punishable by up to 10 years in prison, March said.

Authorities seized two computers from Burns’ home which were being searched by investigators for additional information.

“We’re filing one count, but it’s early on in the investigation,” March said. “There may be more counts forthcoming.”

March said the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children picked up on the possible transaction and alerted New York State Police.

The investigation expanded to include the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation and the Chickasha Police Department, and Burns was arrested Saturday.

Information source: Fox News

Accused Madam Reveals No New Clients – “These were not cheap women”

By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
Published: May 4, 2007
Filed at 11:58 p.m. ET

WASHINGTON (AP) — A woman accused of running a Washington-area prostitution ring detailed her business in a highly anticipated TV interview Friday night but identified no new well-known clients.

Deborah Jeane Palfrey supplied the ABC newsmagazine ”20/20” with 46 pounds of phone records from her escort service, Pamela Martin and Associates, in hopes that its investigation would ferret out clients who would testify that they did not have sex with the women Palfrey employed.

Some of the phone records could be tracked to prominent business executives, NASA officials, at least five military officers and exclusive neighborhood mansions, according to the ABC report. But there were no members of Congress or White House officials traced through Palfrey’s records, the network reported.

Palfrey, 51, of Vallejo, Calif., is charged in federal court with racketeering and money laundering associated with prostitution. She said she ran the business, Pamela Martin and Associates, from her laundry room, and that the women who worked for her signed contracts in which they promised not to have sex with clients. (*interesting running her business from her laundry room.  How appropriate, laundry room=dirty laundry*)  ”These were not cheap women.  These were very nice women who just needed to make a few extra dollars,” Palfrey said.

Palfrey did identify one of her escorts, a former university professor who committed suicide after being charged with prostitution.

Palfrey maintained the business was legitimate.

”I was selling fantasy sex,” Palfrey said.

The Washington escort service carried out its business undetected at some of the city’s most exclusive hotels, she said. The service charged a flat rate of $275 for 90 minutes, she said.

The most prominent client of Palfrey’s business was senior State Department official Randall Tobias, (*please see the initial post regarding Tobias*)

Tobias has said he obtained massages (*yeah right, I suppose he tried marijuana but didn’t inhale either*) but denied having sex with the escorts.

In court papers last month and again in Friday’s interview, Palfrey named Harlan Ullman, known as an author of the ”shock and awe” combat strategy, as a regular customer. Ullman’s attorney, Marc Mukasey, said Friday before the interview aired that Palfrey should not assume that Ullman will give helpful testimony on her behalf. He declined to elaborate.

On Thursday, a lawyer for Palfrey said an instructor at the U.S. Naval Academy was one of the service’s escorts and ABC reported that a secretary at a prominent law firm was another escort.

Montgomery Blair Sibley, Palfrey’s civil attorney, confirmed a report in the Navy Times that an academy instructor worked as an independent contractor for Palfrey’s service. Sibley said he didn’t know whether the person is still at the academy.

An academy spokeswoman said she had no information about Sibley’s claim.

ABC said a legal secretary at the Akin Gump law firm was suspended after telling her bosses that she had been secretly working as one of Palfrey’s escorts. ABC did not name the woman, who told Akin Gump she expects to be a government witness in the case.

Palfrey told ABC that most of her escorts worked for her because they needed the money (*well damn, you could have knocked me over with that statement*). Palfrey said she urged the women who answered her newspaper and phone book ads to think seriously before signing up.

”Many of these girls had never done this kind of work before,” Palfrey said.

Palfrey said some of the most popular women were in their 50s. She said that there was never an age limit, and that most of the women worked about three shifts a week, ending each night at 11 p.m.

”I made sure they either worked or went to school in the daytime,” she said. (*Well now isn’t that sweet, what a wonderful “mother hen” she was.  So protective of her “nighttime” girls*)

Palfrey, who was sentenced to 18 months in a California prison in 1991 after pleading guilty to attempted pimping, said she rejected an offer in the current case to plead guilty to reduced charges in return for a four-month prison term.

Palfrey and the Internet radio station wsRadio.com will auction tapes of five one-hour interviews with her next week, The Washington Post reported Friday. Bids will start at $5,000. (*and the proceeds will go to????*)

The station’s president, Chris Murch, declined to disclose details of the contract to the newspaper but said Palfrey will donate 10 percent of the proceeds to charity.  (*Ah, there we go, charity…..mmm, wonder if that could be “sweet charity”?*)

* my inserted comments*

Information: The New York Times

Washington Wants to Know: Who’s on Escort Service List?(the saga continues)

Now don’t you just love it when they say they just used their service for massages only………who the hell do they think they are kidding.  It just blows my mind when someone comes up with that statement.  Just like Clinton when he said he had tried marijuana but didn’t inhale.   

By NEIL A. LEWIS
Published: May 1, 2007

deborah-jeane-palfrey.jpgWASHINGTON, April 30 — The woman who faces charges of running a prostitution ring in Washington that serviced the prominent and powerful said Monday that she intended to force many of those clients to testify in her behalf.

The woman, Deborah Jeane Palfrey, is offering a simple defense to government charges that the escort service she ran for 13 years by telephone from her home in California was actually a straightforward prostitution business.

Although she promoted her business as a legal “high-end erotic fantasy service,” she said it was not intended as an exchange of sex for money. She told reporters Monday that her former clients, reported to include a Bush administration economics official and the head of a conservative research group, among others, should confirm that when they are called to testify.

If any sexual activity occurred, she said, it was not authorized or intended by her but undertaken independently by her female subcontractors and male clients “who disobeyed my directives, their signed contracts and participated in illegal behavior.”

In other words, she is stunned at accusations that sexual activity had taken place between the women who worked for her and the men who paid them about $300 for 90 minutes of their attentions.

Washington residents have been mildly titillated by the case but more than mildly curious about the one obvious question: Who were those powerful clients?

As for now, the names of only two have been revealed. The most prominent was Randall L. Tobias, a veteran businessman and the top foreign aid adviser in the State Department, who resigned Friday after he acknowledged to ABC News that he was on the list of Ms. Palfrey’s clients.

The other, disclosed on Ms. Palfrey’s Web site, was Harlan K. Ullman, a Defense Department consultant best known for coining the phrase “shock and awe” to describe the intended effect on Iraq of the war’s opening barrage, but the phrase also might well describe his own reaction to being called by reporters on Friday about the disclosure, about which he declined comment.

Ms. Palfrey says she does not know the actual names of her clients, just their telephone numbers. She said she gave them to ABC News without compensation so the network could use its resources to match names to the numbers.

ABC has used the information to prepare a story to be broadcast this Friday on its show “20/20.” In a promotion for the segment, ABC said on its Web site Monday that the list includes “a Bush administration economist, the head of a conservative think tank, a prominent C.E.O., several lobbyists and a handful of military officials” in addition to Mr. Tobias and Mr. Ullman. The network did not identify the customers by name and a spokesman declined to say whether it would do so Friday.

Mr. Tobias told reporters that he had used the escort service but said he only received massages.

Ms. Palfrey said Monday that she felt sorry for Mr. Tobias because of the unwanted attention he had received but was gratified that he supported her account that she had not run a sex-for-money service. She chided him, however, for choosing not to come forward earlier with his “extremely valuable exculpatory evidence.”

Ms. Palfrey was in United States District Court on Monday to ask Judge Gladys Kessler to replace her court-selected lawyer, A. J. Kramer, the city’s public defender. Judge Kessler said that she could choose another local lawyer, but that the court would not pay the costs for her to retain her choice, Herald Price Fahringer, a New York lawyer well known for his defense work in obscenity cases.

The indictment accuses Ms. Palfrey of engaging more than 100 women from 1993 to 2006 “for the purpose of engaging in prostitution activity with male clients, including sexual intercourse and oral sex in exchange for money.” She made more than $2 million running the operation, known as Pamela Martin and Associates, according to the indictment.

Information: The New York Times