Scots madam jailed over New York call-girl ring

Anna Gristina has revealed that she will name names in a tell-all-book
Anna Gristina has revealed that she will name names in a tell-all-book
Share this article
Have your say

A SCOTTISH mother of four who admitted to running a prostitution ring in New York has been jailed for six months.

Anna Gristina, who is originally from Edinburgh and now lives as an American citizen in Monroe, New York, was the madam of a Manhattan sex service for 15 years.

The 45-year-old, who was also sentenced to five years’ probation, now faces the possibility of deportation as a result of her conviction.

Gristina originally claimed she was merely starting a matchmaking service from her 12-acre property 50 miles north of New York City.

She later admitted the single charge of promoting prostitution by peddling call girls as part of a plea deal at Manhattan Supreme Court on 26 September.

The charge stems from an incident in July 2011, in which prosecutors in the public corruption section of the Manhattan District Attorney’s office caught her on tape arranging for an undercover police officer posing as a client to watch two prostitutes have sex.

Gristina was arrested on 
22 February as she left a fundraising meeting for her East 78th Street brothel.

She spent nearly four months in prison on Riker’s Island following her arrest, before being released on $250,000 (£157,000) bail in June.

Prosecutors believe she made $10 million (£6.4m) from her business which, it was claimed, had had a roster of wealthy 

Despite entering a guilty plea, Gristina continued to insist that she had not “crossed the line”, and claimed her co-accused, Jaynie Mae Baker, had tried to 
incriminate her.

Baker, 31, a former matchmaking recruiter, was charged with helping Gristina set up sexual encounters.

In trying to get the case dismissed, Gristina’s lawyer, Norman Pattis, wrote that the district attorney’s office “vindictively prosecuted her as a result of her failure to co-operate with investigators” during what he called an “illegal interrogation”.

Gristina said in court papers that investigators had shrugged off her requests for a lawyer and told her they would let her go if she gave them information about five men – who were not named in her papers, but were described as a financier, an international banker and a member of a politically connected family, among others.

The district attorney’s office said in court papers that Gristina “has not produced a shred of evidence of actual vindictiveness”.

A grand jury indicted Gristina before her arrest, undermining her argument that she was prosecuted because she did not co-operate, assistant district attorneys Elizabeth Roper and Charles Linehan wrote.

Two alleged prostitutes and a person accused of money-
laundering were also arrested in the case.

Gristina, who has not lived in Scotland for more than 30 years, explained her wealth to her friends and family in the UK by inventing a job in internet marketing and claiming she had found sideline work as an estate agent.

After her initial hearing on 27 September, Gristina told the New York Post: “I’m pretty broken inside.

“I used to have the fight inside me, but now I don’t. And I couldn’t get a better deal.”

Speaking about the possibility of being deported back to Scotland, she added: “My family is here, my children are here.

“I really want all of them to be just able to get on with their lives.”