Ex-lawyer for ‘D.C. Madam’ has names, not just client phone numbers

WASHINGTON – For the first time, the former lawyer for “D.C. Madam” Deborah Jeane Palfrey says her sealed escort service records, which allegedly could affect the 2016 presidential election, contains customer names, addresses and social security numbers, not just their telephone numbers.

For the past two weeks, Montgomery Blair Sibley — whose license to practice law in D.C. was suspended in 2008 — has been attempting to modify several 2007 restraining orders that prohibited him from releasing Palfrey’s phone records.

Without being specific, Sibley has said the records “may contain information relevant to the upcoming presidential election.”

Palfrey’s escort service, Pamela Martin and Associates, operated in the nation’s capital from 1996 through 2007.

Prior to the restraining orders, after claims from Sibley and Palfrey that her customers included high-powered Washingtonians who worked on Capitol Hill and the White House, media organizations began dissecting telephone numbers that appeared in Palfrey’s phone records.

Louisiana Sen. David Vitter acknowledged being a client of Palfrey’s service.

ABC News, which first had access to the numbers, revealed some of the positions of government employees whose numbers appeared on Palfrey’s list, but decided against reporting names.

Other news organizations, including WTOP, rarely disclosed the names associated with the phone numbers, based on whether the customers were public figures.

In a motion filed Monday, Sibley reveals the sealed records he holds include far more identifying information than was previously known.

In December 2007, in a subpoena of Verizon Wireless, authorized by Judge Gladys Kessler – at the time the sitting judge in Palfrey’s federal racketeering, money laundering, and mail fraud case – Sibley attached a list of 5,902 telephone numbers that appeared in his client’s phone records.

Verizon Wireless provided a CD with 815 account holder customer names, addresses, social security numbers, and home and business telephone numbers.

Citing the restraining orders, Sibley has declined to disclose which, if any presidential candidates might be affected by the names on the CD.

It’s unclear whether a judge will promptly – or ever – decide whether to release Sibley from the constraints of the 2007 restraining orders.

Chief Judge Richard Roberts of the United States District Court for the District of Columbia ruled last week Sibley will not be personally allowed to argue for the records’ release, since Sibley remains prohibited from practicing before the federal court in D.C.

In addition, Roberts wrote Sibley hadn’t demonstrated why he still had Palfrey’s records, after she fired him.

In Monday’s motion, Sibley provided more of the background to Palfrey’s cases. Sibley says while Palfrey had hired another attorney in her criminal case, she had provided Sibley with her phone records in a civil forfeiture case, and asked him to maintain them.

Also filed Monday, Sibley, who has a history of inflammatory filings, again asked Roberts to enter his motions in the Sibley file, which Roberts had declined to do.

Sibley argues, absent a court order, there is no authority to delay filing his motions.

He writes, “For you to ‘conceal’ my motions is, my estimation, a felony.”

Neal Augenstein

Neal Augenstein has been a reporter at WTOP since 1997. Through the years, Neal has covered many of the crimes and trials that have gripped the region. Neal's been pleased to receive awards over the years for hard news, feature reporting, use of sound and sports.

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