Maine man gets 20 days in Zumba paid-sex case

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — An insurance agent who helped run a prostitution operation out of his mistress’s Zumba studio and watched sex videos made with a hidden camera will serve 20 days in jail for a scandal that rocked a seaside community better known for its beaches and sea captains’ homes than for crime.

Mark Strong Sr. told the judge Thursday that he was sorry for the pain he caused his family, and his wife broke down in sobs during a plea for leniency.

“I do apologize for each of my selfish actions and the harm that I have caused many. Most importantly I want to apologize to my wife, my two sons and my entire family because I’ve caused so much hurt in so many ways, emotionally, physically and financially,” Strong said, his voice choking.

Prosecutors say Strong controlled every facet of the Kennebunk operation, monitoring fitness instructor Alexis Wright’s calendar, reviewing her ledgers, collecting dossiers on clients and watching the sexual encounters streamed live to the computer in his office 100 miles up the coast in Thomaston.

Strong also suggested boosting profits by marketing to higher-paying fetish clients and engaging in paid sex acts with multiple men simultaneously, prosecutors said.

“This was not a man in love. This was not a voyeur. This was hard-nosed businessman,” said Deputy York County District Attorney Justina McGettigan, who asked the judge to sentence Strong to 364 days in jail, noting that the prostitution continued even after police raided Wright’s studio, office and apartment in Kennebunk.

Superior Court Justice Nancy Mills imposed a 20-day sentence on the first count of promotion of prostitution and concurrent sentences on the remaining 12 misdemeanor counts. She also imposed $3,000 in fines.

Wright, who now lives in Wells, is due to stand trial in May. She faces 106 counts including prostitution, privacy violations, tax offenses and welfare fraud.

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