Escort agency charged with money laundering

By Christine Duhaime | November 1st, 2011

The U.S. Attorney’s Office and the FBI announced the filing today of money laundering and prostitution charges against several Philadelphia-based companies, R.S. Duffy Inc. and National A-1 Advertising Inc., that allegedly ran an escort service from the website escorts.com. The companies entered into a plea agreement in respect of money laundering conspiracy charges and agreed to the recommended sentence of 18 months, payment of a $1.5 million fine and forfeiture of $4.9 million in property used to facilitate the predicate offences.

According to the criminal information filed against the defendants, the escort agency provided escort services and collected service fees in respect thereof. It also sold Internet subscriptions which allowed clients to view escorts for rent on the website in different stages of deshabille. It collected subscription fees via credit cards, wire transfers, cheques, and other forms of Internet payments. The money paid to Escorts.com was proceeds of crime (the crime being, among other things, prostitution and the sending of funds across state boundaries for an illegal purpose). The defendants apparently then laundered the proceeds of crime by making ongoing deposits at various financial institutions and with investment advisors and investment funds.

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