Woman charged in prostitution case sentenced

June 01, 2005|by DAVE McMILLION

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - A Martinsburg woman charged with running a prostitution business out of a Berkeley County hotel was sentenced Tuesday in U.S. District Court to five months in jail, according to her attorney.

Susan Christine Powell, 42, likely will serve the sentence in the Alderson Federal Correctional Institute in Alderson, W.Va., according to attorney Kevin D. Mills.

After the jail sentence, Powell will serve five months of house arrest, Mills said.

Under the house arrest, Powell will have to be on good behavior, although she will not be required to wear any electronic monitoring equipment, Mills said.


Powell will be allowed to go to work under house arrest, Mills said.

The sentence from U.S. District Judge Craig Broadwater follows Powell's earlier guilty plea to one count of evading income taxes.

Powell originally was charged with misdemeanor counts of keeping/maintaining a prostitution ring/business and deriving support/maintenance from a prostitute.

Mills said Powell made a statement Tuesday to Broadwater where she expressed remorse. Broadwater told Powell that she was receiving a considerably less-severe sentence than other defendants in the case could face.

Mills said his firm has represented Powell and said she has made a "remarkable" turnaround in her life.

"This is a fair sentence," Mills said.

Powell faced up to five years in prison. Mills said he thinks Broadwater gave the lesser sentence because of Powell's cooperation in the case, which involved testifying against other defendants.

Dilipkumar S. "Dan" Patel, 53, and Surendra D. "Sam" Singh, 43, were convicted April 20 in U.S. District Court of money laundering, conspiracy and inducing women to travel across state lines for illegal interstate commerce.

Singh owned and managed the Economy Inn, while Patel managed the Scottish Inns, both along U.S. 11 in Martinsburg.

Prosecutors said the pair recruited prostitutes through out-of-state newspaper ads by offering discounted room rates. Prostitutes were not charged for their rooms until they'd seen their first customer of the day, and they were not billed at all if they had no customers, prosecutors alleged.

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