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Will “Elite Clientele” Be named in Houston Escort Agency Story?

There was a story that broke last year about an escort service operating in Denver Colorado called Denver Players. The agency was supposed to have been providing girls to professional ball players, doctors and lawyers, etc.

That story died out rather quickly and the only vague connection to it was the linking of a federal judge- Edward Nottingham- to another agency in the area called Bada Bing out of Denver. Really big names were supposed to have been named but nothing came out of it. Which makes you wonder if the same thing will happen with this Houston story:

HOUSTON – A Houston couple accused of running one of the city’s largest prostitution rings conducted background checks on prospective customers – including checking their employment records and income levels – before allowing them to join the operation’s long list of clients, a police investigator says.

The brothel that Deborah L. Turbiville and her husband, Charles Fletcher Turbiville, are accused of operating catered to an elite clientele and used the Internet to do a lot of its business, said Houston police Sgt. Mark Kilty.

“You had to be brought into what she called ‘her family,’ ” Kilty said. “These weren’t johns off the street. These were suit-and-tie businessmen. She had the upper scale.”

According to court documents, some of the prostitutes employed by the ring met their clients at upscale hotels in the Galleria area and charged about $350 an hour.

“She’s the Heidi Fleiss of Houston,” Kilty said. “She was the one all the big players go to. If you come to town and you’re a big player, you call her. She screens you and she knows who you are and then you’re good to go.”

While police are still trying to determine how large the operation was, Kilty said the client list totals more than 1,500 people.

West Indies-born Deborah Turbiville, 33, and her 31-year-old husband, from College Station, are charged with aggravated promotion of prostitution. They were arrested on March 10 and released after each posted $5,000 bail.

The couple declined to comment on the charges when contacted at their west Houston home Tuesday. Neighbors in the quiet 1970s-era subdivision off Briar Grove said they knew little about the couple.

Court documents indicated Deborah Turbiville handled the day-to-day operations, interviewing prospective employees at a Galleria-area Starbucks and answering calls and e-mails from potential clients.

Their client list includes professional athletes, doctors and lawyers, according to court documents.

Kilty said the extensive background checks were conducted before the couple would allow clients access to the lavish apartment on Memorial Drive where eight to 15 women worked.

“For in-calls, she had a location off of Memorial – upscale apartment building, very nice, very luxurious on the inside. And she did a lot of out-calls, too,” Kilty said.

Neighbors said the prostitution ring must have operated very discreetly because they had no inkling of what was taking place in their building, part of a complex that is across the street from the quiet, secluded grounds of St. Mary’s Seminary.

The Turbivilles accepted client referrals from trusted customers, officials said.

Investigators plan to interview those named on the client list. They have not disclosed any of the names.

Police also are trying to find all of the women who are believed to have worked in the brothel. Two are named in the charges against the Turbivilles but have not been charged. They are still being questioned.

“These are college girls, single moms and girls who were out of work,” Kilty said. “It was mostly a 50/50 mix of white and Hispanic women.”

Kilty said most of the women implicated were in their early 20s, moved frequently and were college-educated or attending college.

Prosecutors said the enterprise relied heavily on Internet customers.

“It was Web-based,” said Assistant District Attorney Craig Still.

“Log in, make your appointment, then follow it up with a phone call.”

He said the Web sites – including www.houstongirlfriend.com, www.htxgfe.com and www.viviansfriends.com – displayed photos and details of the women. The sites have been taken off line, he said.

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