New charge in "sex-for-tickets" case

PHILADELPHIA - December 16, 2009

Police testified at a preliminary hearing Wednesday that Susan Finkelstein sent topless photos to them after posting an online Craigslist ad.

An officer surreptitiously responded to the ad, titled "Desperate Blonde seeking World Series Tickets," asking her to send a photo of herself.

She, in turn, allegedly sent three topless photos. When asked what she was willing to pay, police say she responded, "Well let''s just say my currency is unconventional."

An undercover officer met her at a Bensalem bar, as three others stood nearby. As the two drank beer, the officer says Finklestein identified herself as a prostitute and said she was "willing to do anytyhing" to secure World Series tickets.

The, the officer says, she exposed herself.

While the defense argued that in and of itself was not enough to go forward, District Justice Joseph Falcone disagreed and ordered the case to proceed to trial.

"I think we had the appropriate argument, and we'll move forward from here," said prosecutor Steve Jones. "There's a little more to this case than everyone was initially led to believe in the media."

The 43-year-old Finkelstein insists she was merely being creative in her attempt to take her husband to a game between the Philadelphia Phillies and New York Yankees.

Finklestein smiled as she left the courtroom with her attorney. At first, she said she wasn't going to speak at the request of her lawyer, but then spoke to reporters anyway.

"It was very hard to hear the untruths that were said about me and my actions without being able to respond," she said.

Finklestein denies she ever identified herself as a prostitute or used graphic language offering sex for tickets.

"I am a public relations professional, college educated. It's just not in my vocabulary to use those words," she said.

The self-described "buxom blonde" had already faced a charge of promoting prostitution.

Defense lawyer William Brennan calls it a "he-said, she-said scenario."

"If that one guy there at the bar, drinking beer, with no video, no audio, no corroboration. It could be true, it could not be true," said Brennan.

"And buying me beer as well," Finkelstein immediately added.

Brennan says he may file a motion asking another judge to review the ruling. As it stands now, Finklestein is scheduled to be arraigned on January 5th.

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