Madams Partner Morgan Stanley Banker David Walker Provided Billionaire Hedge Funders, and CEOs with Penthouse and Playboy models For $2000 an Hour Service. Anna Gristina made more then $10 Million in her running the brothel from an Upper East Side apartment Morgan Stanley banker David Walker denies being Gristina’s financial backer and partner suspended from work pending an investigation A Morgan Stanley investment banker accused of financing the soccer-mom-turned-Manhattan madam has been suspended from his job pending an investigation as he claims he was not the only banker who had worked with her.Anna Gristina was arrested last month after a five-year investigation which alleges she has been running a multimillion-dollar brothel from a Manhattan apartment for the last 15 years.
Morgan Stanley is waiting until the investigation is over before taking any further action against Mr Walker. Another high-end hooker who claims she worked for Gristina has come out of the woodwork to reveal details of the type of operation allegedly run from the Upper East Side apartment. The woman, who would only give her name as Lizzie, told the Daily News that the prostitution ring attracted everyone from club owners to royalty from all over the world and that women had to both look great, act professionally and lady like and be intelligent. She said: ‘I’m not a typical escort. I don’t have big implants, I don’t dress like a prostitute. I don’t do drugs, I don’t even smoke.’ Gristina screened all potential clients and chose only the best – though no one ever saw her or came into direct contact with her. “Anna is very selective about the girls she has working for her,” Lizzie told the Daily News. ‘But we never saw Anna.’ The only thing low rent about the operation was that all the money made – which she insisted had to be paid in cash – was kept in the microwave of the apartment the business allegedly operated from.
Morgan Stanley CEO James Gorman might want to send a “thank you” note to Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance. That’s because the big Wall Street firm could have found itself financing an online dating service being developed by a recently-arrested Manhattan woman who law enforcement authorities say ran a high-end prostitution ring out of her Upper East Side apartment, the FOX Business Network has learned. The woman, Anna Gristina met with Dave Walker, a veteran Morgan Stanley (MS: 18.19, +0.31, +1.73%) broker, to discuss the online dating service and how she might get financing for its development, people close to the probe tell FBN. The Manhattan DA’s office claims that the project was connected to Gristina’s prostitution ring, though an attorney for Gristina says it was a legitimate business. Walker explained his ties to Gristina yesterday during a meeting with senior Morgan Stanley officials, people with direct knowledge of the matter say. Walker said he met Gristina to discuss the online dating service, which he said he believed was a legitimate business opportunity. He also said he was discussing with Gristina ways to raise money for the project, which for the time being has been scuttled because of her arrest, these people say. Brokers typically raise money for their clients and business associates, often asking their firms for loans to launch new businesses, meaning that were it not for Gristina’s recent arrest by Vance’s office, Morgan Stanley may have been lending money to create what law enforcement authorities believe would have been a website to supplement her prostitution ring. People close to Morgan Stanley say that Gristina wasn’t a brokerage client of Walker or any broker at the firm. During his meeting with Morgan executives, Walker described his relationship with Gristina as “social,” and he called her a “friend.”
The firm’s ties to Gristina mark the second embarrassing episode in recent weeks for the white-shoe investment bank, which traces its roots to the old House of Morgan. Recently, a firm investment banker was charged with a hate crime and for stabbing a cab driver during a fare dispute.
Walker, for his part, has been a broker since 1988, working at a variety of top Wall Street firms, and joined Morgan Stanley after its purchase of the Smith Barney brokerage firm from Citigroup (C: 34.00, +0.76, +2.29%) in 2009. His brokerage record shows only one customer complaint during that time, which the company denied. Walker worked out of the firm’s midtown Manhattan office, and person who knows Walker described his production as “above average.”
Meanwhile, high-ranking members of the NYPD, Morgan Stanley and other powerful figures from the political, legal and entertainment worlds are scrambling to cover their tracks before any more information on the alleged brothel comes to light. It emerged on Tuesday the 44-year-old has many powerful friends and contacts who have helped to protect her – and themselves – in the last 15 years, which is the length of time her prostitution empire has allegedly been up and running.
Claims: Irma Nici said she worked for Gristina for six months in 2002 and confirmed she had well-placed law-enforcement sources tipping her off about planned stings Since the scandal came to light on Tuesday, NYPD sergeant Richard Wall has already been ordered to appear before the Internal Affairs Bureau with his memo book logging his work for the past five years, according to the New York Post.
He was allegedly seen making repeated trips to the Manhattan apartment that is believed to have housed ‘Madam’ Gristina’s brothel.
Past call girls and sources close to the illicit business are now coming out of the woodwork to provide further details of the ’empire’ Gristina has allegedly been able to run undetected until now.
A source told the Post she employed Penthouse and Playboy models to service millionaire and billionaire clients including hedge funders, CEOs and real-estate moguls.
High-class escort Irma Nici – who famously claimed to have slept with David Beckham and Eliot Spitzer – told the Post she worked for Gristina for six months in 2002 and confirmed she had well-placed law-enforcement sources tipping her off about undercover stings and investigations. The call girl, from Bosnia, told the paper: ‘She always did say she had someone giving her a heads up. When the Fleur d’Elite brothel was busted, she was laughing because she had inside information.
‘Everyone was scared when the other agencies went down. But not her.’ Yesterday, Gristina’s attorney was asked about his client’s ‘little black book’ and who may be in there. But he told Good Day New York he never asked her about a so-called black book and ‘it doesn’t exist, as far as I’m concerned’.
Peter J. Gleason said: ‘It’s irrelevant to me if there’s a black book or not.
‘She’s not admitting to anything, except that she is a loving, kind mother who was ripped away from her four children.
One of Gorr’s brothers is a detective in Sullivan County, and his other is a cop in Liberty, New York.
Meanwhile, her alleged accomplice in the business Jaynie Baker, 30, from Brooklyn, is still wanted by police for questioning after they were tipped off she may have been sending customers to Gristina’s brothel.
The pretty blonde claims to work for New York dating company VIP Life, which legitimately supplies wealthy clients with well-to-do ladies who are looking for love.
She has reportedly fled to Los Angeles.
Founder of VIP Life Lisa Clampitt told DNAInfo Baker was a ‘sweet young woman’ who would never be involved in anything illegal.
But sources told the Post Baker was Gristina’s way out and that she wanted to turn her illegal prostitution business into something more legitimate, pairing rich men with high-class escorts, models who were to be the ‘gold standard of escort services’.
The source said: ‘It was all about her moving on with her life. She wanted out.’
It also emerged she only accepted cash for her girls so as not to leave any paper trail. Some high-end escorts cost $2,000 per hour. To take the girls away for a weekend cost $25,000.
Sources said Gristina took a 40 per cent cut of all earnings, making herself more than $10million over 15 years. At one stage she had more than 50 girls working for her. Her girls were known to be the best of the best and ‘worth every penny’ of the high price they commanded. Carefully selected so they didn’t look like hookers and could participate in an intellectual conversation, she banned drinking, drugs and strippers. The mother-of-four was also said to detest the idea of under-age prostitution, according to the New York Post, though it has been alleged that at least one minor was involved.
Accomplice: Jaynie Baker’s profile on the VIP Life’s website, for which she finds eligible wealthy bachelors in exchange for a fee
Kristin Davis, a New York madam who supplied Spitzer with prostitutes, has alleged it was the former governor himself who tipped off someone working for Gristina’s business, Fleur d’Elite, about a sting on escort agencies – prompting the British woman to flee temporarily to Canada.
Linehan explained it was thought she would do the same ‘at the moment’ she was discovered, although she had been arrested before being able to do so.
Judge Juan Merhcan agreed there was a ‘significant’ risk of her fleeing and ordered she remain in custody.
He said: ‘It seems that $2million bail and $1million cash is appropriate given the risk of flight so I am not going to modify the bail.’
Gristina, a suburban soccer mom who moved to New York 20 years ago from her native Edinburgh, was arrested after a five-year investigation during which undercover police taped more than 100 hours of audio where she bragged about her high-end clients, how she had contacts in law enforcement who would tip her off and even how she used underage girls for some of the trysts, according to explosive court documents.
The five-year-long investigation was run by a Manhattan district attorney’s office unit that pursues cases against police and other uniformed city workers, according to a transcript of her February 23 arraignment.
Neighbours say a steady stream of young women – usually of Eastern European descent – would come and go from the second-floor apartment, as did a number of suited business men.
Gristina boasted she had ‘business contacts world-wide’ which are thought to include powerful politicians, top-law enforcement, influential lawyers, bankers, entertainment execs and Fortune 500 businessmen, according to the New York Post.
The DA also said Gristina had not reported any income to the government in a number of years so she will likely be charged with tax evasion as well.
Second husband: Dario Gristina, a Conservative Republican Candidate for NYS Assembly, said he divorced Anna years ago and knew nothing of the allegations
When she was arrested on February 22, she was meeting with an unnamed investment banker at his Morgan Stanley office for a meeting to try to raise money to finance what prosecutors believe may be an online start-up that would match prostitutes with wealthy men.
Investigator Parco claimed she had been trying to set up a legitimate dating website aimed at rich clients.
Minors were involved in some of the encounters Gristina arranged, the prosecutor said.
He cited information from at least one eyewitness account – a confidential informant who was one of Gristina’s prostitutes. Defence lawyers dismissed reports that she had provided underage girls as ‘disgusting’.
According to the Daily News, the escort service offered clients a three-tiered pricing system.
Costs ranged from $1,000 for the ‘Dream Model girls’, $1,500 for ‘Calendar Girls, fashion models and budding actors’, and $2,000 and up for the ‘Ultimate Elite Model’ category.
Mohammed Azad, 32, who owns a restaurant in the building where Gristina allegedly operated her brothel, told the Post: ‘I see people in and out coming over here, sometimes many in one day. I always see young fashionable women, always under 30. They don’t live here.’
Her ex-husband Dario Gristina, a Conservative Republican Candidate for NYS Assembly, told the Daily News: ‘We divorced a long time ago, I am surprised.’
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