D.C. Lawyer Demands ABC News Keep His Client Secret

The lawyer for a "government witness" in the federal prosecution of Jeane Palfrey, the accused D.C. Madam, is demanding his client's name not be broadcast by ABC News.

In a letter to ABC News, Steven Salky of Zuckerman Spaeder in Washington, D.C., said he has "reason to believe" that his client might be named in this Friday's "20/20" report about the alleged prostitution ring.

But Salky did not identify who his client is.


ABC News has made contact with an extensive list of men traced to phone records of Palfrey's escort service business.

In his letter to ABC News, Salky claimed broadcasting his client's name would violate a court order preventing "Ms. Palfrey from engaging in acts or actions against Government witnesses."

The court order, issued March 22 by Federal District Judge Gladys Kessler, ordered Palfrey to stop her lawsuit against a number of former employees of her escort service.  She alleged they had breached their employment agreement by having sex with customers.  Palfrey says her service only provided "legal, fantasy sex" and not any actual sexual intercourse.

Judge Kessler said Palfrey's lawsuit was "harassment" of a government witness and ordered her not to engage in any "similar acts." 

Prior to the court order, Palfrey provided four years' worth of phone records to ABC News. She said she wanted to "stand up to the government" and "show the hypocrisy of the situation that's going on."

ABC News did not pay for the records or agree to provide research to Palfrey or her legal team.

One customer, Randall Tobias, resigned last week as deputy secretary of state after confirming to ABC News he had placed calls to the escort service to have "some gals come over to the condo for a massage." Tobias denied there was any sex involved.

He resigned prior to any public mention of his name. 

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