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Interview With Deborah Jeane Palfrey, AKA The DC Madam

Deborah Jeane Palrey

I first heard of the DC Madam case in March of this year. Her client list seemed so tantalizing. Which hypocritical politicians would be exposed? Which moral majority leaders would be shown to love the very “sins” they preached against? I’ll admit when the phone records became freely available I got myself a copy. Am I searching them? Yes, but I haven’t found anything. What I did find is a story that got more troubling the more I investigated.

How would the mainstream media portray her and to an extent, the adult industry? I wanted to see coverage treating sex workers as just that-workers. I wanted to hear discussion of how politicians impose anti-sex politics on the world yet are clients themselves. I wanted to read articles about how the government seizes people’s homes and savings before even trying them in court.

However I didn’t read that type of coverage in the mainstream press. I’m disappointed with ABC and others like them. This situation has so many angles begging to be explored. A responsible media would see this and report these angles to the public.

The more I learned about Ms. Palfrey’s case the more interested I became. Yes, that juicy client list still intrigues me but there is a more sinister angle. The actions of the government in this case are very disturbing-the way the government spied on her, watched her money transactions via methods meant to watch terrorists and seized her assets.

I asked Ms. Palfrey for an interview. To my utter delight she granted my request. We talked for over an hour and I have transcribed our conversation. I also have made it available as an mp3 file.

I found Ms. Palfrey to be an excellent interviewee. She worked around my schedule and answered all of my questions. She was well spoken, compelling and feisty. She’s a fighter and is not backing down.
As I said in the interview if more people stood up to the government this country wouldn’t be in the state that it is in now. It is my hope this interview inspires people to learn more about Ms. Palfrey’s situation, sex workers rights and the many troubling aspects of our political judicial system. For more information on Ms. Palfrey you can visit her website here.

About the interview

Since I write a sex and political blog I wanted to cover both angles. I asked sex worker and political friends what questions they would like to ask Ms. Palfrey. I incorporated these with my own. Of course after the fact I can think of at least a dozen more questions I would have liked to ask her. I’m happy with the interview and feel it covers many important aspects of the case. I’m very thankful to Ms. Palfrey for granting me this interview.

About the mp3 file

The audio version runs a little over an hour. There are a few odd noises that showed up on the recording that should be noted. My call waiting kicked in a few times and you can hear my hitting the ignore button. Ms. Palfrey’s fax machine or modem made a couple noises. While recording, a thunderstorm rolled in my area and you can hear some thunder while we’re talking. Clicking the below link will open the mp3. If you have difficulty opening please email me at radicalvixenatgmaildotcom

Listen to the audio version of the interview.

Interview With Deborah Jeane Palfrey, AKA The DC Madam Transcript

Deborah Jean Palfrey: Good afternoon, Jeane Palfrey.

Radical Vixen: Hi this is Vixen from Radical Vixen.

JP: Hi Radical how are you?

RV: I’m doing good.

JP: Are you there? It was a little fuzzy there I could barely hear you.

RV: I have you on speaker phone for I can record it easy.

JP: Oh ok. Very good.

RV: I’m all set up if you’re good to go.

JP: Just tell me when you’re ready to go. Maybe you want to speak up or more clearly and that’ll be about it.

RV: Is this better?

JP: That’s a lot better yes.

RV: Ok, I just had to adjust. Ok I suppose we can begin. First off thank you for doing the interview.

JP: Well you’re quite welcome.

RV: I thought it would be good to start off-I’ve been reading what’s been happening with your case and a lot of it [my reading] has been catching up over the last few months. I was wondering where do things stand as of today?

JP: As of today we are waiting on a suppression hearing which is scheduled to take place on August the 28th. The attorneys are in the process of going back and forth with the various motions. We will have our suppression hearing, again it is scheduled for August 28th. We’ll have oral arguments that day. Now the judge could of course rule from the bench which would be wonderful if she did. If she doesn’t which seems to be more her style not to, then she will go and she will reflect on what has been said and she will write an opinion. That could take a couple of days to a couple of weeks to a couple of months. In the meantime we have 8 separate pretrial motions before the judge. They’ve been before the judge for I bet about 2 plus weeks now, coming up on three weeks. Any one of these could kill the case for all intensive purposes. Most likely she’s not going to rule on any of these until she hears the suppression hearing on August 28th. So that’s basically where we stand right now.

RV: After the latest press conference from Senator Vitter I’m curious of all the scandals that have come out of the phone records has any one incident surprised you more than the others?

JP: No, I’ve made the comment before that I think there’s a script for some of these folks in these positions. I mean they come out, they kind of go into hiding for a few days, they pull themselves together, then they come out either with their wife on their side carrying on about how strong their marriage is or they go off into rehab somewhere. And you don’t really see or hear from then for another month or two until every thing dies down.

So the reactions have not surprised me. They’ve pretty much been across the board. They’ve been anything from I’ve sinned as David Vitter has said to Harlan Ullman who said the accusation is beneath the dignity of a comment to Randall Tobias who said hey nothing happened I just had a couple of gals come over for a massage. So none of these reactions have surprised me to be honest with you.

RV: I was listening to an interview you did with My Side of the Story and I’ve also been reading how the mainstream press covers your story. As a blogger I’m curious-What have you noticed is the difference the media has treated you? ABC vs Alex Jones [for example]. I’m curious what differences have you noticed in the types of media.

JP: Alex Jones from what I know of Alex Jones, and I was on his show not too long ago last week or so, was actually really interested in the issues. ABC did a very nice fluff piece on me and I guess from a public relations standpoint if that’s what I was interested in they did a very lovely piece. However they really are not interested in doing much more than taking my situation and reaping as much as they could for sweeps week out of it. They weren’t really interested in my opinion in retrospect, at getting at the truth or trying to find out what was really going on. They were mostly interested in sweeps week and they played me for just that.

RV: I’ve heard you say the mainstream media is more interested in who you went to prom with than the story. If you were a man in this situation that owned your company how do you think the case and the media coverage would be different?

JP: It might be different, it might not be. The dividing line isn’t here with sex and gender anymore. It’s between real news and real journalism and entertainment. We have such a lopsided society here where we have a culture that thrive 80, 90% of the time on entertainment and fluff and really only looks at news and journalism and important issues maybe 10, 15, 20% of the time. So I’m not so sure the division here is between men and women as much as it is between real news and junk entertainment. We have such a society that is so asleep at the wheel. We just all, and I’ve even been guilty of it myself, naturally don’t want to think about the heavier issues because to be honest with you I think the heavier issues are just too overwhelming and none of us can really handle them.

RV: It seems with the mainstream coverage more often than not it’s a shorter blurb but then when I read about you on a lot of blogs the stories tend to be longer, they tend to go into more depth.

JP: It sure does doesn’t it. That’s my point exactly. There are very few people out there interested in journalism or getting at the truth. The bloggers and the independents are the few people out there right now who are in search of what really occurred in my situation. The rest of the folks are treating it as a joke, gossip, of no relevance, no importance whatsoever. What’s sad and what’s ironic about all of this is that the bloggers are the real Woodward and Bernsteins of today. They don’t have the financial backing, they don’t have the clout to get the real story out there.

RV: That’s true. They don’t have the audience or the press pass.

JP: They don’t. You know if only somebody like ABC who has the real power and punch behind them to get a story like mine out there and would take it on my story could be exposed within a matter of a few weeks. But they won’t do that. They’ll take it to a certain point as they did in the 20/20 broadcast. They’ll milk it for all it’s worth with regards to sweeps week and ratings and then just stop.

RV: I can see that totally. One thing that I’ve been wondering after every thing’s that happened-your old employees. What’s your relationship to them now?

JP: Well first of all technically every time my attorney every time he hears that someone uses the word employee he gets very nervous. It’s all subcontractors so I have to differentiate it. For the sake of his sanity I always have to refer to them as subcontractors. I have no relationship because none of them have contacted me and I have not contacted them. I have no idea who my accusers are. I can assume some if not all of them are my accusers. But at this point in time no one has come forward to identify themselves as one of the witnesses for the government. This has been ongoing for 10 months now. This started on October 4 of last year and I have not had one gal except for a single person who worked for me back in the mid 90s come forward and say I’d like to help you. And she indeed has done so. She’s done a couple of interviews, one with Newsweek,Vanity Fair, that sort of thing. She’s come forward and she’s spoken on my behalf. But she’s done so in shadow. The other ones-nobody wants to come forward and of course none of the clients want to come forward either.

RV: Of course.

JP: Everybody in my situation has run for the hills.

RV: Everyone has run and gone into shadows it sounds like.

JP: Boy. I’ll use another metaphor. Rats jumping from a ship. Every last one of them has jumped.

RV: When I’ve blogged about you on my blog in the past, I wrote “Jeane Palfrey”, known as the DC Madam. But then the last time I did I thought that’s really an accusatory nickname. I wonder how do you feel being called the DC Madam? Because in a way it’s already judging you before your day in court.

JP: Yeah, in a way it is. But I answer that question by saying I’ve been called worse to this point.

RV: This is true.

JP: And I’ll be called worse before this is all over. I can assure you that’s not too hard to imagine in my situation. “DC”-well it’s true it was a DC based business. “Madam”-even though I contend the business was based up legal sexual behavior I guess the word madam would be applicable here. I certainly don’t think the word pimp is applicable. It certainly refers to a man and it also refers to a predatory individual, neither one I am. In a way I don’t mind it, in another way I can see how some people consider the moniker to be rather unkind.

RV: As a professional Mistress I’m curious if you know a large percentage of your clients made fetish requests?

JP: I tended not to oblige them by request as much as I tended to oblige them by time, location and type of girl. And then I let that part go between the two of them.

RV: In my field I just deal with fetishes and that type of thing.

JP: I advertised my business a slight bit differently. I advertised it as an adult service, fantasy erotic service. Anything up to the line of illegality was between the man and the woman.

RV: What I’m finding one of the most ironic things is politicians like Vitter have come out “Oh I’ve sinned, here’s my wife beside me like you were saying earlier. It seems like they are so morally conservative. Here, Vitter supports abstinence only education, he’s against gay marriage, he’s very very anti-choice. As the bedrock of the moral conservative movement he comes out as “I”m a sinner, please forgive me”. As more of these scandals are coming out I wanted to get your view on that. Do you view it as ironic? I view it as I’m not surprised.

JP: I tell you what. He’s getting such a free pass isn’t he? Because he’s an unindited co-conspirator in all of this along with all the other 9,999 other estimated clients who used my service. Because I’m being charged with racketeering enterprise, rico and conspiracy. So in essence the man is getting a free pass and I’m looking at 55 years in prison.

RV: He gets to have a press conference and say I’m sorry and then he gets to wash his hands of it.

JP: He goes back to work.

RV: Yeah. He goes back to work and maybe it comes up in his re-election campaign.

JP: Well, I’m sure it comes up every night at home. He’s not living a life of roses at the moment. But the bottom line is he’s not a co-conspirator, he’s not being indicted. He’s not being put in a position where he’s looking at incarceration. He didn’t have his entire life savings, all his property frozen and seized by the United States government. He’s embarrassed, of course he’s embarrassed. He’s professionally shamed, his life at home is probably horrendous. However, he is not in the position I’m in right now. I’ve been put in all of those positions. I’ve been professionally embarrassed, personally humiliated. I’ve had all of that but I’m still looking at 55 years in a federal penitentiary which in essence is the rest of my life. Forfeiture of my entire life savings and complete destruction of my life and he gets a free pass.

RV: Exactly. Embarrassment is a free pass really.

JP: It is a free pass believe me. Along with Harlan Ullman and Randall Tobias and the entire rest of them, including the women. And by the way let me mention that prostitution is not a federal crime here.

RV: [I heard that when] I was listening to that in the other interview.

JP: Prostitution is not a federal crime it’s a state crime. By the way it’s a misdemeanor state crime in the lower courts in the states. This is not a felony like crime. They have literally federalized prostitution in my case in order to support money laundering, conspiracy and racketeering which are the crimes which can then support civil asset forfeiture. They’ve come down on me like I was the Gambino crime family. I ran a little cottage business out of the laundry room of my home, my little Martha Stewart home, in San Francisco bay area for 13 years, harmed no one, had no arrests, no problems but yet they’ve come down on me. My situation is very very disturbing on a lot of levels and in a lot of ways.

You know I was under observation, I don’t even like to use the word investigation. It appears I was under observation for as far back that I can tell as March 2004. And until the trigger was pulled on me on Oct 2006-31 months they observed me ala J. Edgar Hoover style. There was no appearance as far as I can tell actual investigation if there was actual prostitution related activities. Now you and I both know being in this industry that a sting operation by the local vice squad can be put together and executed in a matter of 30, 60, 90 days. It can be done very quickly. As a matter of fact it can be done in 3,4,5,6 days to be honest with you. If they really wanted to take their time they could take a couple of months to build a case. It doesn’t take 31 months for a prostitution case.

They were not watching me for prostitution related activities. They were watching me for some reason and the only reason I can logically conclude and I don’t think there is another other explanation would be this powder keg of information that I was holding onto for all these years. Unbeknownst to me I didn’t realize the value of my phone records. Now when they came here into my house on October 4th and executed the search warrant I think they were looking for the traditional Heidi Fleiss black book and they didn’t find it because I never had a traditional Heidi Fleiss black book. However, they walked by the now infamous 46 pounds of phone records numerous times.

RV: That’s what amazes me.

JP: In order to confiscate certain items from my property they had to walk by the file boxes. And I don’t think they ever connected the dots that every one of my phone calls to and from Washington were long distance therefore they would be itemized and documented. And as a result the real black book was in the phone records.

RV: That amazes me too because when I get my phone bill there are all the numbers itemized.

JP: I just don’t think they ever connected the dots. They were so hell bent on getting into this house one way or another to get the black book. And then when they didn’t find the black book because there was no black book I don’t think they really put two and two together, connected the dots and thought that the phone records were the real black book with all itemized information.

RV: With you being observed my first thought is it costs money to pay people to observe you. All the money spent to do these things to you while our highways are falling apart, we’re getting social programs cut but yet the government can always find the money to do this to you and others.

JP: Not really. Let me tell you why not really. You see, I’m it. I’m a special person here. I’m special in the sense that there’s never been a case like mine before. This has not happened in the Washington DC or Baltimore areas before. There is no other service in the DC area which has had this happen to them in the last 10 months or the last 10 years for that matter. It’s just me and me alone.

And this is what is so disturbing about this situation. This again in my opinion, and the opinions of many other people who have looked at my case, has very little, if anything, to do with prostitution. Now it has something to do with something but I don’t think it’s prostitution. Now what I think it is is that they were watching or observing me for political reasons. Because I was sitting on this powder keg of information. You know as well as I do that running a business like mine for 13 years is a bit of an anomaly. And in a place like Washington DC, in a Mayflower Madam like setting all of a sudden it takes on a whole different import than many of the other agencies.

And I think when I closed the business rather unexpectedly and of course if you’ve been watching me for years and all of a sudden the business just shut down and my house went on the market, all of a sudden I’m moving to Germany you would get a little nervous. They got a little nervous. They came running out here once I made a little wire transfer to Germany. I transferred $70,000 to Germany last September 28th. Do you know that the next day on September 29th what appeared to have been this non-existant investigation of 31 months went into warp mode. They were out here a couple of business days later on October 3rd, a couple of postal inspectors flew out from DC. They were trying to gain access to my property posing as a couple being transferred from Washington to the Bay area. They did not identify themselves as postal inspectors, they tried to gain entry under false pretenses. My real estate agent had to inform them that I was not in the area, that I was in Europe for another week, that she did not have access to the property because the client would not give her a key. I wanted to be available if anyone wanted to see the property I wanted to be present.

It’s at this point in time from what I gather and the time line suggests that they went up to Sacramento which is about an hour drive from where I live and they got a search warrant. They got a search warrant based on information that was 3 to 5 years old. Now for the average person that doesn’t mean a lot. But very rarely is a search warrant ever executed in this country in any case on information that is older than 6 months.

RV: I find that petty disturbing.

JP: That’s very disturbing. It was written in 3rd person by one of the postal inspectors about generic people, times and places from 3 to 5 years ago which is now 4 to 6 years ago. And somehow they got this search warrant, they pulled the trigger the next morning, they executed it, they got into the property here. I think they came on a fishing expedition and I think their original thought was to gain entry as an interested, potential buyer of my property. Speak to me, look around the property, feel it out, feel the situation out and then decide what to do.

And I think based upon the fact that they couldn’t get in they panicked, they went up to Sacramento and miraculously got this search warrant. They pulled the trigger the next day, they got into my property and they found nothing. They had found absolutely nothing. But they had pulled the trigger and I think it’s at this point and time that they had to carry on like this was a “regular prostitution case”. I don’t think they could ever even explain. I think they’ll go down to the death, they will never admit why they were really watching me all this time. And that is my contention at this point in time. Because there is no other reasonable explanation. It’s very scary isn’t it.

RV: It is [especially] the civil forfeiture. It seems like a lot of people don’t know about it because it doesn’t affect most Americans. It’s very scary.

JP: It actually does affect about 2 million of Americans each year in one matter, shape or form. It’s becoming a more egregious act for the police as every day goes by. If you are caught in any sort of situation where you’ve committed a felony in essence and it’s attached to property-for example let’s say you have an 18 year old son who’s living in the basement and is growing a little pot in a little flower bed and you know about it and don’t really think one way or the other about it except well shouldn’t be doing that sort of thing. If the police can prove that you knew your child was growing a couple of pot plants in the basement they can take your property from you.

RV: I find that unconstitutional.

JP: Well so do a lot of people but it’s on the books. It happens. Most people think that the civil assets forfeiture only happens in drug related cases.

RV: Exactly.

JP: And then it’s only after the person has been convicted that they can take the property. Oh no, they take it right up front. They froze all of my assets on October 4th of last year. They took everything, they stripped me bare.

RV: It seems like the people that don’t know about it don’t think it’s a big deal. But then people realize the scary, Draconian effect when either someone they know is affected, it slowly starts coming out in the news. It’s such a scary thing that they took all that from you and you haven’t even been found non-guilty or guilty.

JP: No, no I haven’t. And I don’t intend to be found guilty. I expect this case, despite the naysayers, to fall apart fairly quickly. We have tremendous legal arguments on the table. Even if Judge Kesler kind of split the decision one way for them and one way for me, a 50% favorable ruling would utterly obliterate the government’s ruling. There would be no case. And I would even go so far as to say even if the judge rules 30 to 40% in my case, the government’s case would be pretty much obliterated. It’s not going to take much to obliterate their case here.

It’s a process. Once you get into the system you’ve got to work your way out of the system. Everything takes a month. A month for this, a month for that, another month for this. It takes a long time to get through the system.

RV: And a lot of money to get through the system.

JP: In this case the government has made me indigent so the government has to pay for my attorney.

RV: Which is ironic because they’re the ones that made you indigent.

JP: You would think they would at least had left me enough to pay for my own attorney but no they made me indigent. The government has had to pay for my attorney, the government has had to pay for my trips back and forth to Washington DC. I mean the government has got to pick up the tab on quite a few things here because they have technically made me indigent, without funds. The system is so sick. It’s so twisted.

RV: It is.

JP: It is such a mess. You can’t believe how bad it is until you get in the middle of it and you see how they squeeze you and they play you and they ruin you. The whole deck of cards is stacked against you. They have 50 cards, you have two. You have a couple, they have them all and you have to play your sad little hand like a master poker player here just to keep your head above water.

RV: You were saying earlier there hasn’t been a case like yours before. After yours is all said and done do you think this situation will set some sort of precedent?

JP: Oh god I hope so. As a matter of fact one of the motions we have before the court right now, one of the nine motions we have is called a privacy motion. It’s building upon the Lawrence vs. Texas case of a few years back, the homosexual rights case in Texas. The argument in that case was that two consenting adults have the right to do as they see fit in the privacy of their home or domicile. That it is none of the government’s business, that government intrusion is completely off limits. What we’re doing is adding the element of money to it and saying what two people do in the privacy of a domicile is entirely their business and none of the government’s concern even if there is the exchange of money. If that flies, I’m praying to god this women, wonderful woman Judge Kessler rules in my favor on this one.

Not only does my case [static noise] but in essence to a large extent prostitution would then become legalized in this country until somebody steps up to the plate to challenge it.

RV: Wow, that could have far reaching effects then.

JP: It would have tremendously far reaching effects. And this case could indeed be the one and she could be the judge to do it because she’s a Clinton appointee, she’s about to retire, she’s a woman, she seems to be a bit of a feminist, she seems to be a protege of Ruth Ginsburg and Sandra Day O’Conner. She comes Harvard Grad, back in the ’50s, ’60s went to law school. This is a woman who came up the hard way. This is a woman that in my opinion if there ever was a judge to do it and if there were ever a case to do it, it couldn’t get much better than my situation at the moment. It really could not.

RV: If seems that were to happen with the ruling to make prostitution legal it seems like it would have to be a byproduct with a case like this. Because what senator is going to try to pass a bill?

JP: Oh no senator is going to try to pass a bill. Nor did any senator try to pass abortion years and years ago in the ’70s.

RV: Yeah, it took Roe vs. Wade.

JP: Nor has anybody come to the plate to say that homosexuality is ok from a legislative standpoint. This has all been done through the courts and through the interpretation of the Constitution and the Bill of Rights and so on and so forth. It is our right for the government not to intrude in our bedrooms. We’re taking the case or the premise a step further-no right to intrude in our bedroom even if money is exchanged. So if this flies with her and again she could be the judge to do it and this could be the case that does it. At least for awhile prostitution could be considered legal in this country until somebody steps in to fight it off in one manner or another. It’ll be like Roe vs. Wade where it’s challenged and challenged and challenged until finally it becomes established law.

So I’m hoping not just for my sake because I believe I have a good chance in other areas for this case to fall apart but I believe just on this one point alone for the sake of everyone else that this one goes through. Again not just for my benefit but for the benefit of many other people as well.

RV: Absolutely. That would be wonderful.

JP: This is sort of a heavy duty case in a lot of ways. And indeed I hope it will set some sort of precedent. And I hope this will be one of them. Now if she doesn’t go for this one I don’t think there’s going to be too many more cases like this one brought against escort services in the Washington D.C. area in the near future. It’s become quite a nightmare on a lot of levels and in a lot of ways for everybody.

RV: I’ve noticed that. There are so many twists and turns to your story.

JP: There is. And the reasons there are twists and turns is because I’m not playing the game the way they want me to play it. They want me to sit back and to be the dutiful little defendant and take my beating and go off to prison. And that’s not the way it’s going to be. I’m going to fight them in the gutter if I have to with everything at my disposal. I will push and I will push and I will push until finally [in] this ridiculous case there is an infusion of sanity and it’s over.

RV: That’s the impression I got. They really expected you to plea, hang your head down and go away.

JP: But they do that with everybody.

RV: Absolutely.

JP: Every single person they go after whether it’s a prostitute or whatever the case may be. They roll over you like a Mac truck and they expect you to take it and to go off. And nobody fights them. I was told this in the beginning. People said to me Jeane nobody ever fights them. You are an anomaly. You are truly a unique situation here that you’re willing to stand up and fight these people and nobody else will.

RV: I can see that. And like you were saying in another interview it’s not just about prostitution. It has so many different levels politically-that people shouldn’t plea if they’re innocent. They should fight. They’re being pressured, like you said steamrolled, there’s civil forfeiture, there’s so many aspects of this case that are important I think.

JP: Some of the attorneys that I have had and that are no longer in my life or will not be soon have said things to me like ‘Jeane won’t don’t you just go to prison for 8 months? You’ll be out in 8 months. It’s going to take at least 8 months to fight it. I thought this person was the biggest buffoon and he’s an attorney. Only a buffoon would say give up your liberty for 8 months. I wouldn’t give up my liberty for 8 minutes. The only time I ever voluntarily give up my liberty and this is about as far as I’m willing to stretch it in this lifetime is when I’m trapped inside an airplane and I can’t go anywhere and I’m on a taxiway and I’m stuck there with everybody else. That’s about as far in this lifetime that I’m willing to go to give up my liberty. Any anyone is a blithering idiot who would say to another person “what’s the big deal? Go to jail for 8 months and it will be over in 8 months”. And I’ve had people say stuff like this to me. I’ve had people say don’t say anything, don’t give any press conferences, don’t speak up, just be quiet. Don’t do anything, don’t aggravate the situation.

Don’t aggravate the situation? You’ve got to be kidding me. These people can come after me, destroy me, take every shot they possibly can at me, literally destroy me and my life and I’m supposed to just sit back and be quiet and dutiful and well mannered.

RV: You’re supposed to lay back and take it.

JP: Take it. We don’t advise you to speak up, to give interviews. You’re only hurting your case. How am I hurting my case? By getting the truth out? By telling people these assholes, I’ll use the word let’s call them what they are, these assholes, these bunch of thugs went up to Sacramento and got a search warrant after trying to deceptively obtain entry to my home under false pretenses. When they couldn’t get into my home under false pretenses they then went up to Sacramento and got a search warrant based on information 3 to 5years old. In situations like that you can get search warrants on just about anybody. Probable cause is out the window. What’s the point of even going to a judge and getting a court order for a search warrant? What is the point when you can get search warrants 3 to 5 years old.

RV: It’s just eroding our civil liberties.

JP: It’s scary. Let me tell you it’s just terrifying. And the more I get into it this past week my computer’s hacked, my website is hacked, my phone lines go dead. I’m told by the phone technician who came out the next day to fix my phone lines they were purposely tampered. I have people harassing me, I’m getting a newspaper I that I didn’t order. My American flag that has been flying outside my house for years was desecrated, somebody came along and cut it in half a few weeks back.

RV: I think it’s a smear and harassment campaign because you’re not laying back and taking it, you’re fighting.

JP: That’s right. And God forbid I do anything wrong here. They’ll revoke my released on recognition bond and my rear end would be behind bars in the snap of a finger. But these people can do this to me? I called the FBI and the FBI actually said to me when I said all these electronic things are being done to me, my computer, my website, my phone. They said we don’t have jurisdiction in essence. This is not our problem and oh and by the way such things are not a crime. I said what are you kidding me? Such things are not a crime? You mean you can hack into somebody’s website or their email and that’s not a crime?

RV: Oh that’s ridiculous.

JP: I was told no it’s not. I said what about all these 14 year old boys that I see hacking into the Pentagon’s database and retrieving information and being sent off to prison for 10 years. That seems to be a crime then. But it’s not a crime for me? I was told Ma’am if we’re interested in your case we’ll call you back. I said who are you, what is your name. “I’m the Duty agent.” I said don’t you have a name and they said you can identify me at the duty agent. I said ok fine. Do I have a case number or a reference number for this conversation? “No. If the agents are interested they’ll call you back.”

RV: I think more people need to know that this sort of thing happens.

JP: That’s why I’m doing this interview with you. That’s why I continue to do these interviews on an ongoing basis and will continue to do so until my voice shuts down because of laryngitis or something. And then as soon as I heal I’ll be back talking again.

RV: What you’re doing is fighting back. You’re innocent, you’re going to fight for your rights, you’re not just going to go along and plea because they want to shut you up. In my mind that’s what a true patriot does-they stand up for rights.

JP: I would think so. These people who are telling me plea out, go along, don’t make waves, don’t speak out, don’t stand up for yourself, just take it-these people scare me to death. I just don’t understand these people. They’re that comfortable in their lives that they’re willing to go so far in the system but that’s it.

RV: That kind of attitude leads to a police state I think.

JP: That’s where we’re pretty much at right now. We’re not too far away. You know the wife transfer, the one that triggered all this last September/October? It was picked up on one of those terror watch lists where they’re supposed to be watching terrorists and not the American people? When I wired $70,000 dollars to Germany to buy my little retirement flat over there, it was picked up on one of those terrorist tracking programs. And that’s when they went into warp mode the next day and in a few business days later they were out here posing as a couple being transferred from Washington DC to the Bay area.

RV: Sometimes I think the word ‘terrorist’ is the new Satan from the witch trials. Do these Draconian things because the devil’s behind it now it’s do these horrible things because the terrorists are behind it.

JP: That’s it. Blame the terrorists for everything and you can get away with anything you want. I think that a lot of people are seeing what is happening to certain individuals and of course it’s taken awhile. But people like me are starting to come to the surface and are starting to expose what’s been done to average, ordinary American citizens.

RV: It’s good that you’ve decided “I’m going to fight this” because it keeps it in people’s faces. If people agree to be condemned and go away people don’t realize this is happening to real Americans right now.

JP: And everyone’s so afraid. I even see that on the blogs. No one wants to identify themselves for example on Daily Kos. Nobody wants to identify themselves by their real names. Everybody is hiding behind these pseudonyms. Everybody is terrified to come forward, so many people are really afraid to come forward and fight because they’re afraid that they’re going to be audited by the IRS. Or something is going to happen to them with their job or what have you. I’ve had people say to me God bless you because I cannot afford to give up my entire life’s work for a principle. And good for you that you’re fighting for the rest of us.

RV: I can see that with the metaphor David vs. Goliath battle. The government seems like it has endless pockets and then they freeze your money and you’re supposed to fight them.

JP: By the way it should be noted that my case is divided into two sections. The first section is the civil section which lasted from October 4th of last year when my assets were seized until I was criminally indicted on March 1st of this year. Now during this phase they take all your money but you’re supposed to be able to hire a civil assets forfeiture attorney to go and get your money back for you. If you don’t have any money to hire someone and you’re up against a 30 day timeline to protest or the government seizes and not just seizes but you forfeit your life savings to them. So I had to find an attorney within 30 days and come up with a sum of money. Thank God I had a line of credit is all I can say. As able to hire an attorney to help me initially. It was only when I entered the criminal phase on March 1st was I was declared indigent and I was entitled to actual council. I was given council at that point ant time, not good council but I was given council nonetheless.

So they put you in this untenable position where at the beginning thank God I had a line of credit because no attorney would touch me unless I could prove that the money that I was giving to them was not part of illegal gotten gain. Of course credit could not be considered part of illegally gotten gain because it’s money you’re borrowing in essence. But then the government had to supply me with an attorney in the criminal phase which they have done.

RV: It seems like with the civil forfeiture they draw this line around you where you’re an untouchable. People don’t want to help you because they might get tainted.

JP: That’s right. As a matter of fact I was told by several attorneys that I would have to prove that the money was not part of the illegally gotten gains. Because if it was part of the illegally gotten gains they would not touch my case because if they lost my case the government would come back to them and take the money back. So I would have to either win the lottery or get someone step in and give me the money, like a relative or a friend. Because they would not touch the case. Fortunately in my situation I had a very good line of credit and I was able to borrow on it to hire an attorney to start the process to save my property because if I had not done so it would have automatically been forfeited to the government.

RV: It’s like an unintentional lesson here is get lots of good credit just in case.

JP: Save for a rainy day. Get lots of good credit because you don’t know when Big Brother’s coming down on you. If they can do this to me they can do it to anyone. Because at worst my case is a little prostitution case that they have turned into a federal racketeering situation. 55 years of potential time in a federal penitentiary for the rest of my life and all my life savings. And they have made a mountain literally out of nothing. I won’t even say a molehill, out of practically nothing here. And why have they done that is the question. What were they doing watching me and observing me for 31 months? What was the purpose? What was really going on? That’s the real story here. Even though the who’s who list as I’ve often said is very very tantalizing. I even find it fascinating in a who’s going to be outed next kind of thing. That’s not the real story. The real story is this government spying and what were they doing watching me for 31 months? Why were they watching me and for what purpose? What did I have that they thought was so valuable?

RV: That’s what’s so frustrating about the mainstream coverage of your story. The list is tantalizing and interesting. What hypocritical senator is going to be outed next? But that’s just the surface of the story. The real meat of the issue is far far beneath that I think.

JP: I agree. I absolutely whole heartedly agree. It takes awhile to talk to somebody. It takes awhile to answer questions and to get this story out. For people to sit back and go oh my God. This has nothing to do with Senator Vitter. If anything you may want to even argue that Senator Vitter is a bit of a victim in all of this. Because he may have been one of the people that they, whoever they are, wanted to out eventually, or maybe even wanted to protect and in that case he wouldn’t have been a victim. But by the records coming out in the manner that they did he has become a victim in all of this.

So if the government had just not pulled the trigger on October 4th and executed that search warrant or had I been home so that these two postal inspectors who identified themselves as Joe and Maria, the couple moving from Washington DC to the San Francisco area. Had I just been home to entertain Joe and Maria, to give them a tour of the house, to explain to them why I’m selling the house, to let them feel me out and go on their little fishing expedition, I think at that point and time they might have been satisfied that I wasn’t going to do anything wild and crazy here and I think they might have just gone back to Washington DC.

RV: In a way it’s a sad commentary on our society that they assume you’re doing something, that you’re up to no good. They assume you’re doing something sinister and really all you were doing was retiring.

JP: Well that’s right. And that might be the biggest irony in all of this when it’s all over and done with. Is that those 46 pounds of phone records were considered of no value to me from October 4 of last year
until the time I was criminally indited in late February, early March of this year. When my attorney Mr. Sibly4, Montgomery Sibley, said to me Jeane you need good criminal council. The only way I can possibly think that you can ever get the $2, 3, 4 hundred thousand dollars you need to get a good criminal attorney would be to sell those phone records. And at the time I said they are worth something, let’s sell them.

Well we pulled off that idea because we didn’t know who the ultimate buyer was. We didn’t know what intelligence agency around the world would be the ultimate buyer and how many layers of attorneys we would go through or they would go through to get it to the ultimate buyer so to speak. So we backed off that idea within a week or so. Then after that we decided we still need those records to be investigated and that’s when ABC came along and said look we won’t pay you for the records but we will investigate the records for you. We thought this is great. They’ll investigate the records for leads and exculpatory evidence and that kind of thing. We all know that ABC played me for ratings and nothing more.

Nonetheless in the process of all this it came to our attention that we should probably put those records out for the hypocrisy angle and for the possibility and susceptibility of blackmail. Because not only were there people who violated the public trust like David Vitter, hypocrites, but there are also people we believe and we were told by very reliable sources that individuals were most likely set up through the service and ultimately blackmailed. People who had security clearances and political connections and that kind of thing. And we thought you know what if we just out everybody we’re going to free those people and nobody’s going to be in a position where they can be blackmailed anymore.

We figured the way people came to us and said look it’s your public duty. Be respective of your particular situation with your case. It is your public duty to put those records out there on the open market so to speak so that public can throughly investigate those records. And that’s indeed what we did. And that’s how we got to the point where we actually gave out the records. So in the final analysis it was more for patriotic or altruistic reasons. I still don’t want, and it doesn’t appear as if it’s happening, a lot of innocent people being slaughtered by the wayside here. It appears that only a few people are being outed and it seems to be being done in a reasonable fashion. Because it takes a lot of time and a lot of work to go through those records and the only people and the only people who are willing to go through those records in a responsible manner are usually responsible, conscientious bloggers or journalists or what have you. So I see the outing of people to be anywhere from a few dozen ultimately to a hundred or so, many of whom will not be well known names but there will be quite a few people outed along the way.

RV: When Tobias was in the news I didn’t recognize that name at first. I had to Google him.

JP: I certainly didn’t. I didn’t even recognize David Vitter’s name to be honest with you. And I know no body recognized Harlan Ullman.

RV: I didn’t.

JP: Who was Mr. Shock and Awe.

RV: As soon as I Googled him I was like Ohhh but the name didn’t ring a bell right off.

JP: No. And I would suspect there are a lot of people, especially lobbyists, people who are well known inside the beltway and are well known inside certain circles but certainly not well know to the general public. So I don’t think a lot of average citizens are going to be finding this one or that one. I don’t think David Vitter would have been found by an average citizen. He was found by a private detective of sorts who is very much a Washington DC insider who knows really where all the skeletons are and he immediately recognized his name. I don’t think the average person would have recognized David Vitter’s name, maybe people from Louisiana.

RV: I had to Google him to find his back story.

JP: I did. And I even knew the guy. So it’s not impossible or plausible to think that in the final analysis that it will be the hard core investigators and journalists and bloggers who will dig and dig and dig. It will become a sort of hobby for some of them even.

RV: I can see that.

JP: And certain people will be revealed in time. And again, the people who will be revealed are not going to be household names. I mean you’re not going to hear Karl Rove’s name mentioned probably. You’re not going to hear Dick Cheney’s name mentioned. But you’re going to hear people that really are powerful individuals inside the Beltway. You’re going to hear their names mentioned quite a bit.

RV: What’s interesting about that though is when their names get mentioned it shows the behind the scenes, who’s the powerful players behind the people that we see on TV that we think hold all the power.

JP: That’s right. That’s a really good point. It’s going to be a real education to find out who the real movers and shakers are. Every night we scream at the TV and blame the bastards. But/and now we’ll be able to identify who the real bastards are.

RV: Oh definitely.

JP: Because I don’t think we really even know who they are.

RV: I don’t think so.

JP: It’s easy to point fingers at Condi and Gonzales and maybe we should be pointing fingers at them but there are people who are really right below the radar and nobody knows who they are. They live in a world of anonymity. They come and go on a regular basis but they wield tremendous power. Whether it’s a lobbyist or somebody who works up on the Hill or a lawyer, these are the really powerful people in town.

RV: In way those people are more dangerous because the people on our TV screens or are making the press conference there is an illusion that they have public accountability. And the people behind the scenes-there’s going to be no Congressional hearings on what they did. They have more freedom because they’re in the shadows.

JP: And those are the people who are really in the records and those are the people who will be dug out
in time but again it’s going to take people, not the average Joe in Wisconsin just dialing numbers hoping to find a Congressman. That’s not going to happen. It’s going to take some real sleuthing by some real insider types and it’s probably going to take I’ve estimated months to years to get to the bottom of a few of them. David Vitter was just a quick fast hit.

RV: Your case has been going on for months, months, months. How have you gotten though. Most people don’t have to face the expense, the pressure, the stress. But you’re fighting. What do you think you have?

JP: What has made me get through this is that there’s something in me. I’ve made this statement before that there is just something in me that fights on. What that is I don’t know but I just keep fighting and fighting and fighting. I also just have this wonderful attorney Montgomery Blair Sibley, despite his many faults and my many faults, nonetheless for some reason he gives me a great deal of strength. He’s always on my side, he’s always there. I have a question he answers it. He’s a fighter like me. He has that something in him too. He doesn’t go along to go along by any means. He’d never be one to say just take the 8 months and go off and do your time. He would never be the one who says be quiet, don’t say anything. As a matter fact he’s the one who says who says you have no choice but to fight.

RV: That’s a good way to look at it.

JP: I think there’s something in me and that I’ve paired up with this crazy attorney Montgomery Sibley who’s been equated to Atticus Fitch right out of To Kill A Mockingbird, the Gregory Peck character, the activist attorney. I have been paired up with him and when I’ve been down he has balanced me back out because I’m not perfect by any means, he has balanced me back out. And he’s said look this is ridiculous or this isn’t going anywhere. He’s given me encouragement, faith, hope. And that’s how I’ve gotten through it for 10 months now.

RV: There’s a lot of people that don’t have that something in them. I think that since so many people say don’t complain, just go along with it, you don’t want to cause trouble, that’s how we’ve gotten into this state where this country is now.

JP: That’s right. And you know if I had done something wrong I think I would be there going alright. And let’s just say for arguments sake that this was a prostitution service. Let’s just say for the sake of argument that it was. Does this deserve a 55 year sentence in a federal penitentiary? Why don’t they just give me the death penalty?

RV: Yeah. There are real crimes going on out there.

JP: Scooter Libby created treason against this country for all intensive purposes.

RV: Exactly.

JP: He got a three year sentence at best and now there’s been a commutation and he’s about to get a pardon. He committed treason.

RV: He didn’t even get a slap on the wrist. He got a wrist massage and that’s about it.

JP: That’s all he got. Nothing more and nothing less. And the government just won’t stop in my case. We’ve asked them on three separate occasions during the civil part of this last October through March. We went to them three times and said what is it that you really want here? What’s really going on? Does she know something that you need? Are you investigating another Jack Abramoff? Do you need testimony? Well she’ll give it you, she’s a patriot. You don’t have to do this to her. What is it that you people want? They’re not interested in the clients. They’ve never been interested in the clients. As a matter of fact they stood up in open court a month or two back and said they have no intention of bringing one of the 10,000 clients into court. They do not want them to testify. It is of no consequence to them one way or the other, whether the client committed legal sexual activity or illegal sexual activity. Whatever they did they don’t care, that’s no relevance to the case.

RV: I think that’s very telling about the whole situation, them saying that.

JP: We couldn’t believe it. We couldn’t believe that the government would actually make such a statement. But they did. And they haven’t indited any of the clients, they haven’t indited any of the girls. There are literally hundreds of other escort agencies and independents splattered throughout the Washington and Baltimore areas. Not one of them have been under investigation like this that I know of. Certainly no one has been indicted, no one else has been pursued. I’m it. It’s not as if we came out of the gate radical and fighting and confrontational. We sat back for 5 months, October through March, quiet as church mice. Asking what is it that you want, begging them what is it that you want. We will do whatever you want. They wouldn’t talk to us, they stood us up for appointments, they wouldn’t return phone calls. They wouldn’t hand over discovery, they wouldn’t share information. Then all of a sudden they say you’re going to have to plea out or we’re going to indite her criminally. I said indite me. It was a deal or no deal situation and I said “no deal.” So they indited me criminally.

RV: It was like all they really wanted was to was to steamroll you. That’s what they wanted it sounds like.

JP: I don’t think they have a case, I don’t think they’ve ever had a case. I think that they just want to bury me just like they do everyone else. All these people who don’t have that something in them they seem to do such a fine job on destroying these human beings, their psyches, their will, everything. And they couldn’t do that with me. And they finally said we’ll indite her criminally. And it’s only at that point that we stopped being church mice. And we said we have one of two choices. We can roll over at this point and time and they can absolutely do me like they do everyone else or fighting with all guns blazing and fight this to the death and that’s what we’ve done.

RV: Good for you.

JP: That’s what we’ve done and that’s what I’m continuing to do. This situation need not have gone this far at all. This situation should have been nipped in the bud last fall. But the government I think is so stupid and so dysfunctional they couldn’t use just proper sense and say let’s say let’s close this matter and be done with it. But they could not admit that they did wrong, by coming into this house the way they did. So here we are.

RV: Yes. Well I have just a couple last questions for you.

JP: Sure.

RV: Since all your assets were seized and you obviously have expenses, you have to still pay your electricity bill and all of that-are there people donating to your legal fund. Is there a way for people to do that?

JP: In the beginning I accepted donations, less than a thousand dollars total. I got to the point very quickly that I didn’t like idea of taking 5 and 10 dollar donations from people who 5 and 10 dollars was a lot of money. It just broke my heart when I saw some of these donations come in and I said you know what I can’t do this anymore. So I continue to live off my line of credit which I am pretty much doing up to this point in time. I will not ask for donations. It will break my heart. I have a few people I can go to at this point if I need a little infusion of cash to get me through the next few months.

RV: Is there anything you would like to share with the people that read my blog? Perhaps a question I haven’t asked? Is there anything you’d like to say?

JP: Well, I think I’ve gotten most everything in but I think what is disturbing about this situation is that this appears to have started as an observation of Deborah Jeane Palfrey, her life, her assets, her finances her day to day dealings for business etc. This never appeared to have been an investigation into prostitution related activities as much as it appears to have been some sort of observation of Deborah Jeane Palfrey’s life. Which is very scary, which makes you kind of wonder what were they watching me for? Because you know what I’m just an average, ordinary person.

The only thing that I had that would have been of any value to anyone would be the client list and the proverbial black book which of course I never had but in essence really had in the sense that I had the phone records. This is the most disturbing part of my case, once they pulled the trigger they got in here because they were so desperate to get hold of the black book, to find out what was going on last fall when I closed business unexpectedly and was moving to Germany and so on and so forth. It’s at this point in time that they pulled the trigger and I don’t think there was any looking back for them. I think once they got in here they realized that there was nothing to be had or it wasn’t as bad as perhaps they imagined whatever the case may have been. They had to carry on like this were a “regular prostitution case” when in actuality it never was. Their mistake, their second mistake was thinking I would just roll over and take it. And I haven’t rolled over and I haven’t taken it and now it’s just one big mess for everybody. And it’s mostly going to be a big mess for them because now I’m hell bent and determined to get to the bottom of all this and find out what’s going on.

I think that’s what I’d like to leave with your audience. Is that there is something very disturbing at the core of this case. That someone like me was being used for probably political purposes. I can’t think of anything else at this point to be honest with you. And that this could go on in this country.

RV: Well thank you very much.

JP: Thank you. I greatly appreciate it.

RV: I thought it was wonderful and I hope my readers are inspired to fight back when they’re up against the wall.

JP: Well they should because these people are bullies and they’re thugs. I will say this it’s tough when you’ve got the whole system bearing down on you. And that’s why I’m hoping Judge Kesler on this privacy motion she rules because it will take the pressure off the sex workers and the escorts and the outcalls and all of that throughout this country, this whole industry. It will be like homosexuality-that load will just be lifted off of everyone’s shoulders.

RV: That would be nice.

JP: Wouldn’t it though? Alright, well thank you very much.