Four men and two women charged in police raid that closed alleged brothel in Charlestown
Four men and two women were arraigned in Charlestown District Court today in the wake of a Boston police raid that shut down an alleged brothel and drug den operating in a federally subsidized house, authorities said.
But attorneys for some of the accused scornfully dismissed the evidence as “very thin’’ and said police and Suffolk District Attorney Daniel F. Conley’s office offered no substantial proof that crimes were routinely being committed in the house at 87 Cambridge St.
In a report filed with the court, police said the primary focus of their ongoing investigation were Luis Viaud, 22, of Boston and Hendricks Berdet, 25, of Boston.
Police alleged in the report that Viaud and Berdet were “acting as a team to distribute narcotics and prostitute young women.’’ The department’s Human Trafficking Unit has taken over the investigation, police said.
Berdet’s attorney, George Morrissey, said his client lives on the first floor while the drugs that were found were in the kitchen, a common area, on an upper floor. “It’s a weak case,’’ he said in court
Both men pleaded not guilty to drug-related charges in court today where bail was set at $7,500 cash for Viaud and $500 cash for Berdet.
And the attorney for another defendant, James Imbert, 25, Boston, said the allegations of a brothel were without foundation.
“There is no evidence presented to anyone that prostitution was going on,’’ Imbert’s attorney, Joseph Perullo, said in court.
During their arraignment, Suffolk Assistant District Attorney Peter Pasciucco cited a Boston police investigation that was triggered by community complaints and led to a raid of the building early Thursday morning.
In the report, police said they conducted an undercover drug investigation which included the two sales of heroin to an undercover Boston police officer. During the raid, police said, they recovered thousands of dollars in cash from various spots in the building, sex toys, and business cards commonly used by front businesses for prostitution.
Police also said they seized a flyer headlined, “Charlestown Madness.” It included the phrases, “come party with us for $5 at the door. Nuff gyal ago de de!!!!!’’ Police said in the report that the meaning of the slang phrase was “enough girls to go around.’’
In the police report, the resident of the apartment was identified as Sade Horsely, who was paying $200 out of the $1,200 monthly rent, with the rest covered under the federal Section 8 program. Horsely pleaded not guilty to charges of possession of Class B with intent to distribute. She was released on personal recognizance.John R. Ellement can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.