Alberta MLA Mike Allen
Credits: QMI AGENCY
EDMONTON -- A former Fort McMurray Tory MLA arrested in connection with an undercover online prostitution sting in Minnesota has now been formally charged.
Mike Allen -- MLA for Fort McMurray-Wood Buffalo -- resigned from caucus Tuesday after he was arrested Monday by Minnesota cops conducting the undercover operation. He's now sitting as an independent MLA.
He faces one count of hiring or agreeing to hire a prostitute in a public place. The maximum sentence he faces is one year in prison and a $3,000 fine.
The Minnesota court statement of probable cause states that the Saint Paul Police Department's Human Trafficking Unit conducted a "John" sweep of the City of Saint Paul, Ramsey County, Minnesota, on Monday.
The sweep, it says, is "designed to catch people who are looking to purchase sexual services from women either on the streets or online. In the latter case, a female undercover officer over the age of 18 years poses as a prostitute and posts advertisements on the website backpage.com under the Erotic Services section, offering sexual services for a price. The officer then fields calls from people interested in hiring her and gives them directions to her location. Once an interested person arrives, other police officers monitor their interactions electronically and intervene to arrest when necessary."
The statement goes on to say that at about 7:24 p.m. on Monday, Michael Trent Allen called the undercover officer in response to her advertisement and asked to schedule an appointment. At the defendant's request, the officer explained the various costs, the amount of time, and the numbers of available women. The defendant asked for the officer's address and took a limo to her motel.
About 8 p.m. on Monday, Allen "arrived at the motel, called the officer again, and went to her room. The defendant agreed to pay $200 in exchange for sexual intercourse with two women for one hour while wearing a condom. The defendant placed the cash on the counter and began to undress. The undercover officers have a predetermined bust signal, whereupon other officers entered the room and placed the defendant under arrest."
Allen is scheduled to appear in St. Paul court on Sept. 30.
He had been in St. Paul on government business, attending the Council of State Government Midwestern Legislative Conference. Allen has since refunded the province $2,061.44 for the trip.