In 'Zumba Prostitution' Case, Court Finds No Right to Privacy in Brothels
The "Zumba prostitution" scandal has rocked the small town of Kennebunk, Maine. In case you haven't been following it, prosecutors allege that a Zumba instructor named Alexis Wright was using her Zumba dance studio as a front for prostitution. Jury selection in the trial of Wright's alleged co-conspirator, Mark Strong Sr., began last week. Strong faced 59 misdemeanor counts, including conspiring with Wright, and Wright faced 106 counts, including prostitution and invasion of privacy for acts.
Forty-six of the counts against both Strong and Wright relate to allegations that the two made secret video recordings of her encounters with "customers," without the customers' knowledge. On Friday, the prosecution's case received a major hit when the court dismissed all of those 46 counts against Strong.
The judge handling the case, Nancy Mills, agreed with Strong's argument that patrons of places such as "bordellos, whorehouses and the like" have no reasonable expectation of privacy. "Those places are to commit crime," Strong's attorney argued. "There is no expectation to privacy. If there is, it's illusory." In her ruling, Mills stated that Wright's customers "may have had a subjective expectation of privacy, but I can't find an objective expectation of privacy that society would be willing to accept."
Late Friday night, prosecutors appealed Mills' ruling, which has derailed a huge portion of the case against Strong and presumably Wright. Although a prompt appellate ruling is expected, today Mills delayed Strong's trial until Maine's Supreme Court rules on her decision to dismiss the 46 counts.
Posted by Bruce Carton on January 29, 2013 at 04:48 PM | Permalink
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