A blog for escort business entrepreneurs

The Blueprint Blog is often updated with tips, ideas, and advice for entrepreneurs interested in opening and operating an escort service.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Marie McKinlay Not Guilty in London Trial

First I must congratulate this brave defendant that suffered through something that is unimaginable to most people! Marie McKinlay was cleared on charges of running a prostitution racket (controlling prostitution for gain) in London and according to the Daily Mail, "sobbed with relief" when the jury delivered the not guilty verdicts. She had an intelligent jury that could see through the case that prosecutors presented:

I used to hold a title of sorts for being the only escort business owner in the world (as far as I am aware) to be found not guilty by jury verdict on charges of operating an organized prostitution ring. In the US this is referred to as "organized crime" and RICO (racketeer influenced corrupt organization) charges filed. Now I am just the title holder in the US. In both situations the case was presented as the escorts or prostitutes being "employees" of the agency when in reality, it was much the opposite.

I have no idea what sort of penalty Marie McKinlay faced, but I faced a possible sentence of up to 60 years in a Florida prison. In Florida the two charges I was on trial for are first degree felonies. I will imagine that the potential penalties are much less in London, where the act of prostitution is absolutely legal for the prostitute.

Anyone in the UK have an idea of the possible penalty that Marie could have received if found guilty by the jury?

This case is also representative of why a defendant should take the case to a jury if that defendant knows the case was improperly charged, the business structure was set-up correctly, and they're not guilty of the charges and willing to testify. Marie's willingness to testify was extremely important. If a defendant is unwilling to swear to the truth under questioning on the stand in trial, then a jury knows no more than what the prosecutors claim.

I see that Marie is smiling and happy as she walked away from the court. I ran (literally) from the courthouse after collecting my paperwork and speaking with my attorney for a few moments. Marie is pregnant and could not run or most likely would have. We must ask ourselves why prosecutors often pursue those that deserve it the least. There is always a hidden agenda.

I cry for you as I type this Marie. It brings back memories and a flood of emotion.

Congratulations to Marie McKinlay!

Monday, November 12, 2012

The Marie McKinlay Trial in London: A Discussion

I have read several articles in the last week about the trial of Marie McKinlay in London. Marie is a 40 year-old mother of two that's accused of operating a brothel and an organized prostitution ring. I do not have access to actual court documents and can only interpret what I have read in the news. In fact, I do not know the specific charges that she is on trial for.

This article repeatedly refers to specific amounts of money in her bank account: Mother, 40, accused of running high-class vice ring

I think that's wonderful that she managed to cover her children's education and support them fully with no outside assistance. I do not understand the consistent reference to finances though, unless there is a related charge. Would we rather she was on public assistance?

According to all that I have read, Marie operated a top-level business and all of the escorts were 100% independent, setting their own hours, and paying 30% of the booking rate as a fee for marketing and appointment setting services. Marie took-over the administrative aspect of the service in 2002, while working as an escort for the operation controlled in its entirety by five escorts. This article reveals that she is testifying in trial: 'Escort Madam': I love money and sex

By all counts, I am not sure that I understand why prosecutors would target this strong, independent woman operating as ethically and correctly as possible. The statement is the reason, more likely than not - many in this world do not like independent women that need no help from anyone.

In the last article linked, take note of the images of the escorts and the description of what each offered. The article refers to "girlfriend experience" and "porn star experience," and both are terms that no one in the US in their right mind uses these days. Both terms come with serious baggage to state it mildly, though the wording is not actually illegal anywhere as far as I am aware; they're defined on forums and message boards everywhere.

In the UK, prostitution itself is not illegal for the prostitute; however, operating a brothel is indeed. I'm going to imagine that they expect the prostitutes to find customers online all by themselves with no assistance from anyone. Sounds inconsistent to me, although I do understand what such laws are intended to target. I do not believe that Marie McKinlay operated the sort of agency that the laws were intended for though.

I view each of the escorts working with Marie as operating their own business and contracting her marketing and appointment setting services. Consider that for a moment - it's sort of the reverse of the independent contractor / escort contracted by the agency in the US.

I do not know how trials work in the UK and only hope that Marie is found not guilty of anything she is charged with. While there may be technical improprieties, in spirit it is precisely the type of operation that any government should happily accept. Obviously no one has been coerced or forced in any way, shape, or form in this case. My thoughts are with the defendant.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Opening an Escort Service: The Facts

There are no real escort services that place ads on Backpage and anyone that believes differently is in denial. There are many independent escorts that utilize Backpage and other sites to place classified ads, but that is an entirely different subject. Opening an escort service anywhere in the US or elsewhere in the world requires some money. It is not cheap and it is far from easy.

I see so many people cutting corners these days that it's beyond ridiculous. Who in the hell told you that you could open any business with $100 or less? Certainly not me. As a matter of fact, I used to state that you could do it on just less than $1000 and changed that well over a year ago to closer to $1500 to $2000 minimum. Technology always evolves and what worked a couple of years ago may or may not work today.

Really my reference to cutting corners is the refusal by so many to purchase the appropriate business license that describes specifically what they offer. In most areas of the US, that means an "escort service" license, but in other areas it is "outcall promoter" or even "entertainment". It depends on what you offer and where you are opening the business. You can read most local ordinances and codes that describe specific licenses by visiting the Municipal Code Corporation website. All areas are not the same.

You will come across some areas that really complicate the license for an "escort service" and if you encounter this, it is advisable to either choose a different area OR adjust your business model and what you offer. Do not just skip it all and operate without a license because that is a clear path to arrest. The independent escorts that you contract are not immune from the license process either and in most areas of the world are required to obtain a license to be in business.

Getting into business is not an overnight project. Sure, there will always be idiots that place classified ads on various sites like Backpage and refer to themselves as a business, but actually opening a business requires filing the correct state and local paperwork, designing an actual website(s), visiting an accountant and at some point an attorney. There is so much more to opening a business than placing ads on a classified ads site.

This blog receives far too many reads from people all over the world for the low sales that my Blueprint books have lately. If you have decided to give away or sell digital copies of my book without including me in the process, I hope that your bad karma bites you in the ass. If you downloaded a free copy somewhere, do the right thing and donate by purchasing a copy somewhere that I sell my books, and do it now so that I can have a Christmas.

Information is not free - at least not my information earned through blood, sweat, tears, a horrific two-week trial, and all of the subsequent abuse I have suffered since my acquittal. If you actually pay attention to everything I say in Blueprint for an Escort Service, I have provided you with extremely valuable information - $thousands of $s worth of information. This ain't a fiction book and it already sells at very low prices anywhere that I offer it.

I ask that you actually read the book before emailing me with your stupid questions that are already answered if you had bothered to read. I do not respond kindly to stupid questions answered clearly in my books. This is serious business and I assume that you consider entering the escort business world to make money - what a concept! Yes, we all need to make some money to survive and if you pay attention to my material you will do far more than just survive - you will thrive.

Welcome to capitalism.

Updated on 12 November 2012 to respond to a comment:

It was against my better judgment to allow your comment to post. You have a woman in a skimpy pair of see-thru underwear on your front page. While it is entirely up to you what you do with your business, I have repeatedly recommended discretion - on this blog and in my books. Links deemed "adult" can cause my blog to be deleted, so I have chosen to copy/paste the comment herein:

""There are no real escort services that place ads on Backpage and anyone that believes differently is in denial." Then why do you recommend doing it in your book on page 192? I did purchase it from you,in case you're wondering. :)"

First of all, thank you for purchasing the "Complete Blueprint" book - I truly appreciate it. The quoted statement is a reference to advertising your escort service on Backpage - nowhere have I ever recommended that.  I do understand how the statement could be misconstrued though. The statement in "The Complete Blueprint for an Escort Service" (published in May of 2010) related to posting an ad seeking independent escorts to work with your business and I also state that you should not link your service website in that ad - which eliminates any form of advertising the business. However, I have changed the Backpage statement in that book over a year ago here on the blog and then in the Blueprint Updates when I added the pages to my website.

No service should be placing ANY ad on Backpage. This has been stated repeatedly for well over a year now and in the February 2012 published edition of "Blueprint for an Escort Service". Backpage (BP) has been hot, hot, hot all over the US for at least a year now. I used to like BP back when it was not so popular, but after it was attacked by media and government everywhere, well, I ditched that thought. That happened about the same time that Craigslist closed the "adult jobs" and "erotic services" categories worldwide.

Not intending to be rude, but you'd have to be asleep at the wheel to miss the serious attacks leveled at BP for more than a year now. I've written about it more than once here and on my other blog. I appreciate the First Amendment right of BP to publish such ads and will always side with them, but have no desire to jump-in the fiasco and wouldn't recommend this to anyone else.

The Blueprint Updates are linked in the navigation bar here or you can go to Blueprint Updates on my website. There are 4 topic specific pages linked on that main page and in the top navigation bar on the website. These updates are really important - please do read. Most are technology related as applicable to websites, advertising etc... At the time I decided to post updates on the website, I removed most blog posts here related to updates of the book.

Beyond that, please feel free to contact me privately regarding advice in reference to your website.