New York, NY — There are only eight counties in the United States where prostitution is legal, all in Nevada. But that didn’t stop one retired police officer, who was drawing disability and receiving a pension, from starting up his own escort service, raking in millions of dollars in the process.

Unfortunately for Michael Rizzi (45), his fellow law enforcement officers found out about it and put a stop to it. Rizzi was arrested last year when it was discovered he operated 58 escort service websites.

The Department of Homeland Security investigated Rizzi and arrested him at his Brooklyn home in May of 2016. He was tried, convicted, and sentenced to 14 months in prison for money laundering.

After he serves his time, the dirty ex-cop will spend four months in home confinement and two years probation. He forfeited over $120,000 in cash as well as his Florida vacation home.

Reportedly, Rizzi raked in millions upon millions of dollars and laundered the money through a vast system of shell corporations connected to organized crime. DHS can hardly be pleased with only recovering a little over one hundred thousand dollars. All of which begs the question, “Where’s the rest of the money?”

Also concerning to some was the fact the former police officer wasn’t charged with running an illegal prostitution ring. His lawyer reportedly defended his client’s actions saying the only business with which he was engaged was an escort service and the women knew there were not obligated to perform sexual favors for clients.


Rizzi’s business was called BJM Manhatten Stakes and Entertainment and directed interested Johns to call booking agents to set up the dates with high paid escorts earning as little as $600 per hour with one reportedly bringing in $25,000 in one 24 hour period.

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Judge Carol Amon presided over the criminal case and ordered his assets seized, which included the websites as well. U.S. Attorney Bridget Rhode reflected on the life of the former law enforcement officer.

“Michael Rizzi left behind a life of law enforcement for a new career in which he flagrantly disregarded the law and exploited others for his own enrichment…This office is committed to dismantling money laundering organizations, including those which promote and capitalize on illegal prostitution.”

If it’s true Mr. Rizzi took in millions; then the Feds walked away with very little to show for their investigative efforts. Web sites can be replaced, as well as the home and the chump change confiscated.

But those who are caught up in human trafficking, who may have unwillingly worked for Rizzi at one time or another, may be the real victims in the former law enforcement officer’s shady schemes.

For those who want to go down the rabbit hole into conspiracy theories, one could ask the question why the Feds chose not to investigate the prostitution ring, and its connections to wealthy clients, such as politicians, billionaires, etc.

After all, in the very beginning, the Feds made it clear they were only concerned with the money laundering, a crime for which the federal government receives no revenue. Homeland Security Investigations Assistant in Charge Steven Schrank said, “At the end of the day, we’re focused on the money laundering and organized crime connections to this investigation.”

Schrank claimed Rizzi “moved multiple millions of dollars through shell corporations that operated in and out of New York, and in the financial crime arena, we’re very concerned about the movement of illicit proceeds through shell corporations.”

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Absent from his concerns were any mention of the human assets who, one could say, were trafficked from John to John, whether or not they did so willingly or not.

Maybe the answer to the question of why the Feds chose to go after the money instead of The Who’s Who of clients comes from Rizzi’s own admission. He reportedly bragged, “I’m number one for a reason…I get the most business, my girls make the most money, my clients are the wealthiest people in the world.”

In the Land of the Free, it is against the law to get paid to have sex, unless that sex is filmed, distributed on DVD, and taxed. One of the least talked about systems of oppression in the US is that of persecuting prostitutes.

When referencing prostitution, we are talking about the mutually beneficial exchange of sexual favors for money by two or more consenting partners; not forced human trafficking.

It’s called the “oldest profession in the world” for a reason. Sex is a basic human need. One need only observe the explosive population growth of humans in the last 10,000 years to see that desire to mate is inherent in each and everyone one of us.

When one takes this into consideration, the notion of outlawing consensual sex is seen for what it is, sheer insanity.

Just like the war on drugs creates crime by pushing the unending demand for illicit substances into the black market, the war on the sex trade creates crime in the same manner.

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Because the demand for sex is pushed into dark alleys and late night street corners, a woman working in the sex trade becomes far more vulnerable than if they were legally allowed to operate out of brick and mortar setups. This danger of working on the street drives the need for protection from pimps who are often more abusive than any customer would be.

Despite the tens of thousands of arrests each year, the market has found a way to provide the service of sex using safer solutions. In spite of the laws, sellers of sex have found ways to safely conduct business by setting up “massage” parlors, using phone books, and, of course, the internet — like Rizzi.

Besides being an immoral gang of thieves, the state is also relentless. They have deep pockets of extorted tax dollars of which to dig in to enforce their distorted will on the people.

Despite prostitution arrests dropping from 2001 to 2010, the cost of arresting people for sex remains staggeringly high. Individual cities continue to spend up to $23 million a year stopping people from having voluntary sex.

Meanwhile, involuntary sex goes uninvestigated at an alarming rate. Hundreds of thousands of rape kits are sitting in police departments across the country — collecting dust, as cops petition the government to allow them to have sex with prostitutes so they can then bust them.

In police state USA, truth is stranger than fiction.

Jack Burns is an educator, journalist, investigative reporter, and advocate of natural medicine
  • Harrison Bergeron

    “sex is a basic human need”

    no it is not.

    • The Cat’s Vagina

      It really is. Just because you won’t die without something doesn’t mean you don’t need it.

      • Harrison Bergeron

        You will survive without having sex. Needs and wants are very different.

        • The Cat’s Vagina

          The entire species will not survive if people don’t have sex, so yeah… there’s a need in most people to copulate.

        • The Cat’s Vagina

          *smirks* People who upvote their own posts come off as pathetic. At least make a sock puppet account!

        • Domina Elle

          Speak only for yourself. Liberty and the pursuit of happiness involves sex for many of us. Yes I NEED sex or I am one cranky bitch. I did my time under a vow of celibacy for seven years in the prime of my youth. You get to decide for you only. My life is much healthier with sex than it was without. HEALTH. Human contact is an amazing thing. Sex is amazing and wonderful and a very important part of many people’s lives. VERY.

    • Zackknowitall

      You’re an idiot. have you ever heard of failure to thrive?

      • Harrison Bergeron

        Human needs include air, food, water… You will survive without sex… the reference had nothing to do with reproduction.

        • Zackknowitall

          I should have called you an idiot. I’m not saying people need to reproduce but sex and human contacted is good for people. Some People get sick from not have contact with others.

        • Zackknowitall

          Sorry shouldn’t have called you an idiot.

  • The Cat’s Vagina

    It’s a vicious cycle of self-justifying bullshit. Prostitution is (ostensibly) illegal because it’s “dangerous and degrading for women.” By making their occupations illegal, prostitutes have ZERO legal recourse when people rob them, assault them, or enslave them. Pretty much ALL of the “problems” attributed to prostitution are directly cause by the PROHIBITION of it.

    The bottom line, it’s about sanctimonious morality and maintaining control over women. What better way to demonstrate that something (in this case, a woman’s body) does NOT belong to a person then forbidding them to sell it? I think it’s telling that it’s perfectly legal for me to let countless men use my body for free, but I’m a criminal if I benefit from it in any lasting way.

    • Zackknowitall

      It’s illegal for a person to say they will pay another for sex. This is where the undercover cops posing as hookers and John’s bust people for soliciting prostitution.

      That’s too easy then John needs only to say I’m a photographer and I want to take pictures of you how much for an hour. Taking pictures is a right protected by the first amendment. If the hooker is actually an undercover cop she will never agree to taking pictures for cash. She is will push the man to pay for a sex act. He only needs to say picture for money. Once back in the hotel room the cop will not remove her clothes for naked pictures knowing smart phones can intanstly up loaded to the internet. A hooker will and once she is naked she will have sex for the payment.

      This will not be prostitution as she was only paid to take pictures then they both became aroused and at consensual sex not for money.

      • The Cat’s Vagina

        Color me impressed! I’m sure you, errr… learned this from a friend, so you did.

        • Zackknowitall

          No was watching a an episode of cops. The potential John asked to take naked pictures and the cops were dumb founded. The detained him and contacted the DA to figure out what kind of charges could be dug up against him. They let home go.

      • Domina Elle

        The case at led by sex workers and a client addresses the first amendment violations as well as the fourth and fourteenth amendment violations. In its most recent counter filing the state of CA admits its position that consensual sex divorced from marriage is not protected. They outright say in two places that consensual sex is NOT a human right according to the state, even when money isn’t involved! Another Virginia case reflected the same position on the part of the state. The gov presumes to be entitled to determine which of our relationships are valid and which are not!

    • Domina Elle

      In Alaska, sex worker activists successfully worked to pass a law giving sex workers immunity from arrest if they are witnesses or victims of crimes.

      • The Cat’s Vagina

        That’s a good start.

    • Zackknowitall

      Better yet look at the hooker and say I’m a small time Journalist I won’t use your name or image but I would like to ask you why you do what you do and what prices do you charge. Then say can pay you for an hour of your time to ask question in private. Then if sex breaks out it was a bound and never paid for.

  • Zackknowitall

    The cops will spend millions of not billions in over overtime pay to set of undercover prostitution stings to arrest ppl for consensual sex instead of spending that money testing rape kits.

    • The Cat’s Vagina

      There’s no such word as “ppl.” Don’t become one of those vowel-impaired thumb-monkeys!

      • Zackknowitall

        I stopped using proper English once I finished college. The only time I will use it is for business. Most of the time I use voice to text as I don’t have time to stop and compose a response. So my post are the way I speak and not up to English paper standards.

        I’m usually playing on Xbox live, while listening to talk radio, or watching tv while having my phone read the article I will respond to read to me by my phone. I crave into and new info espically News. I can usallr foucus on 3 things at once. This is why I use voice to text. Some times the iPhone will swap people for ppl. If the post no abbreviation I posted it by hand.

  • anarchyst

    He will be put in a federal “country club” prison, under an assumed name. These prisons are, quite often, located on military bases. It’s a shame that he will not be put in the same prison as the people he arrested.