3 People arrested in Champagne Room prostitution sting get probation

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By Catherine Holland By Catherine Holland
Sterling Costa By Mike Gertzman Sterling Costa By Mike Gertzman
Janet Fiore By Mike Gertzman Janet Fiore By Mike Gertzman
By Mike Gertzman By Mike Gertzman
By Catherine Holland By Catherine Holland

PHOENIX – Three people arrested in connection with a prostitution ring have been sentenced to probation.

Per a plea agreement, Judge Dean Fink sentenced Sterling Costa, 38, and Janet Fiore, 46, to three years of supervised probation for facilitation to commit illegal control of an enterprise. Margaret Pahssen, 36, was sentenced to nine months of supervised probation for the same charge.

They all were arrested in January 2013 after Phoenix police served search warrants at the Champagne Room near 40th Street and Interstate 10 and a home in Surprise.

Although billed as a 24-hour strip club, police said the business was a house of prostitution where customers would enter, be taken to a back room and be given a "menu" to select from a list of services.

Police began a two-year investigation after receiving complaints from nearby business owners. Police said the investigation took such a long time because the owners of the Champagne Room took precautions to avoid allowing undercover agents to enter their establishment..

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