ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) - A ruling in the case against the former UNM president accused of running an online prostitution ring could be a real game changer.
Chris Garcia, a professor at UNM for nearly 50 years and David Flory, a professor at a New Jersey college, are both accused of running the online prostitution website Southwest Companions.
But on Monday the question was if there was even such a thing as an internet brothel or a virtual house of prostitution. The judge's answer? No.
Prosecutors say the website was an online message board where prostitutes and clients connected, where women were reviewed and the Johns were screened. This was all done in order to keep law enforcement out.
Defense attorneys argued that a computer, a website or an online message board were not actually a physical brother or house of prostitution as described by the state's prostitution laws. And on Monday the judge agreed.
The law sited has not been updated since 1981, otherwise known as pre-internet.
The Defense went on to argue that the two men did not receive any money for running the website and therefore they were not pimps.
Monday's ruling has but the case on hold. Although that does not mean Garcia is in the clear as he could still be indicted on other charges. Prosecutors could also move to appeal the judge's decision.
The District Attorney's office declined an interview but told News 13 they are reviewing what this means to the case and deciding how to proceed.
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