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Prostitutes still up to old tricks

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Police recently arrested an alleged pimp and charged him and a female accomplice with forcing an 18-year-old North Carolina girl to prostitute herself at a Holiday Inn Express at 153-70 South Conduit Avenue, also near the airport.Residents also say a quiet street off Rockaway Boulevard, just a few blocks from the padlocked motel, is a hot spot for streetwalkers, who sometimes operate in broad daylight and turn parked cars into de facto brothels.The Executive Motor Inn at 151-67 North Conduit Ave. was closed about two weeks after police conducted a pre-dawn raid on Dec. 10 that led to the arrest of a suspected pimp and the motel's night clerk, who was believed to have been aware that the hotel was being used by prostitutes. The motel's owners are expected back in court in early March, police said.About seven weeks later on Jan. 31, Queens District Attorney Richard A. Brown announced that a Queens man and a Southern woman had been charged with kidnapping and promoting prostitution. Brown said Carlton "Privilege" Simons, 22, of 113th Drive in Queens Village, and Shernett "Divine" Reevey, of Charlotte, N.C., befriended an 18-year-old they met in North Carolina on Jan. 10 and convinced her to travel with them to New York by promising to take care of her infant son, buy her clothes and introduce her to rap stars including P. Diddy, L'il Jon and Trick Daddy. Brown alleged that once in New York, the victim was forced into prostitution. The defendants, who face up to 25 years in jail, were arrested on Jan. 25 after an undercover sting at the Holiday Inn and held without bail until Feb. 9, when they were scheduled to be in court, according to a spokeswoman for Brown. Brown, in a statement, rejected the notion that prostitution is a victimless crime, referring to it as a "terrifying and despicable offense against society practiced by callous jackals." Alison Monroe, who lives off Rockaway Boulevard in Springfield Gardens, would probably agree. Monroe said her block, which is somewhat secluded, is frequented by prostitutes who operate at all hours.The streetwalkers, Monroe said, are either picked up on Rockaway Boulevard or driven to 145th avenue, a small street that backs up against a sound barrier, near the Federal Aviation Administration building. Monroe said prostitution first became a serious problem on her block this summer. "It's going on all day," Monroe said, although she acknowledged that the activity seems to ebb and flow. "I haven't seen them all this week, but they'll be back"Reach Reporter Craig Giammona by e-mail at news@timesledger.com or by phone at 718-229-0300 ext. 146.

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