Tax, Welfare Fraud Charges for Woman Running Prostitution Ring in Zumba Studio


A Maine woman has been charged with more than 100 counts, stemming from a prostitution operation she ran out of her Zumba studio, including welfare and tax fraud, reports NBC Portland:

ANCHOR: Alexis Wright, the woman accused of running a prostitution operation at her Kennebunk Zumba studio faces felony charges dealing with tax evasion and welfare fraud, in addition to the prostitution charges against her. Wright was indicted on 106 counts this week. According to investigators, Wright ran a prostitution operation out of her Pura Vida studio in Kennebunk. They alledge that for a year and half she taped the sexual encounters, without the knowledge of her paying customers. Investigators say her prostitution business brought in more than $150,000, and that's where the case turns more serious. She's accused of exercising control over property of Maine DHHS, consisting of monetary benefits from food stamps and TANF in excess of $10,000. The complaint goes on to say Wright intentionally created the impression that her only income was from her work as a fitness, dance or exercise instructor. Prosecutors say even though the money was made illegally it is still considered income. Thomaston insurance agent Mark Strong is also charged in the case. He was indicted on 59 counts this week. Both Wright and Strong are due in court Tuesday morning.

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