New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft has been charged with two counts of soliciting prostitution in Jupiter, Florida.
Authorities announced at a Friday news conference that Patriots owner Robert Kraft has been charged with soliciting a prostitute. The charges against Kraft were part of a larger effort by law enforcement to bust massage parlors being used as fronts for prostitution and human trafficking. Jupiter police chief Daniel Kerr announced the charges in a press conference this morning, and said that the warrant for his arrest is with the state attorney’s office and will be sent to his Massachusetts home. Kerr said that the police have video of evidence of Kraft engaging in sex acts in one of these massage parlors. Despite this, Robert Kraft’s spokesman said: “they categorically deny that Mr. Kraft engaged in any illegal activity.”
According to TCPalm.com, ten parlors were shut down in total. Of those, half were in Indian River County. The Vero Beach Police Chief stated that many of the women working in the parlors in his county were brought from China on temporary work visas and thought they were being brought to do legitimate work.
Of the remaining five parlors, four were in Martin County and one was in Jupiter. The Jupiter police submitted a 16-page probable cause affidavit, which stated that they stopped cars as they were leaving the parlor and questioned the drivers about their activities. The investigation has gone on for six months and “nearly 200” people have been charged.
Since 1994, Mr. Kraft has been one of the most successful owners in the NFL. FanSided is still awaiting confirmation from the NFL about whether or not this violates their Personal Conduct Policy.
This is not the first time an NFL owner has run into legal trouble. In 2014, Jim Irsay, owner of the Indianapolis Colts, was arrested for DUI and drug possession. He was suspended six games and fined $500,000. Eddie DeBartolo was involved in a corruption scandal in Louisiana in 1998, and after pleading guilty to not reporting a felony, he was barred for a year from active ownership of the 49ers for one year and fined by the NFL.