A judge declined to lower a $2 million bail this morning for a suburban mom who allegedly moonlit as a madam in an Upper East Side prostitution ring, calling her a flight risk.
Prosecutors have accused Anna Gristina, 44, also known as Anna Scotland, of operating a prostitution ring that involved underage girls out of an uptown apartment.
She has pleaded not guilty and Gristina’s lawyer, Richard Siracusa, had requested that instead of sitting in jail, she be allowed to go home and wear an ankle bracelet tracking her movements.
But Manhattan prosecutors argued today Gristina was a flight risk, saying she has affluent friends who could help her flee the country.
“There are certain high-wealth individuals, friends and business
associates, who have an interest in not having this case go forward and
would help her flee,” said Assistant District Attorney Charles Linehan today.
In response, the judge kept bail at $2 million bond and $1 million cash.
Police have not yet arrested an unnamed alleged conspirator in the case but, according to DNAinfo, police are looking for Jaynie Mae Baker, to question her for possible links to Gristina.
Baker is reportedly a recruiter for a separate matchmaking service, VIP Life, a matchmaking service, which connects affluent singles.
Gristina was reportedly born in Scotland, and is a British citizen with residency in the United States. Before she called Rikers Island home, Gristina lived with her four children in upstate Monroe, N.Y.
She allegedly operated the ring out of an Upper East Side apartment on East 78th Street, the New York Post reported.
Her next court date is May 3, according to the Manhattan district attorney’s office. She could face up to seven years in prison for the charges of promoting prostitution.
Her husband, Kelvin Gorr, told the Daily News he is “heartbroken,” adding, “My wife means everything to me.”
Gristina was arrested after a five-year, undercover investigation by the Manhattan district attorney which included as many as 100 hours of audio and video recordings, according to the New York Daily News. Gristina even allegedly boasted that law enforcement friends would help her if she ever got into trouble with the law.
– Police say she was a madam for more than 15 years
– She allegedly made millions off connecting clients to prostitutes, including some who were underage
– Her connections included politicians, law enforcement, lawyers, bankers and entertainment executives, according to the New York Post
– Gristina was arrested while meeting with a Morgan Stanley banker that she hoped would become an investor, charge prosecutors