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With No Plea Deal, Zumba Prostitution Case Heads To Trial

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Alexis Wright in Cumberland County Court Oct. 9.

Alexis Wright in Cumberland County Court Oct. 9.

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PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — No plea was reached Friday and the case will proceed to trial next week for the business partner of a Zumba dance instructor charged with running a prostitution business from her Kennebunk studio.

A Maine judge on Friday declined to let the defense lawyer remove himself from the trial of Mark Strong Sr.

Defense lawyer Dan Lilley told the judge that that the case expanded from the original charge of one count to 59 counts and that used up his client’s resources.

“Unfortunately, this case blossomed, becoming a great deal larger when that one count became 59 counts,” Lilley said.

Justice Nancy Mills rejected Lilley’s motion to remove himself from trial on Friday, just as she’d rejected previous motions earlier in the week to delay the trial and to move it to another location.

Mills said the defendant had been pressing for a speedy trial and she was ready to proceed with jury selection on Tuesday.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.

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