'Millionaire Madam' Anna Gristina Sets Up Website to Raise Bail Money
MANHATTAN — Alleged "Millionaire Madam" Anna Gristina is in desperate need of some cash.
The husband of the upstate soccer mom, accused of running a prostitution ring out of an Upper East Side apartment, has set up HelpAnna.org to raise funds to get Gristina sprung from Rikers Island, where she is being held on $2 million bail.
Gristina, who faces a single count of promoting prostitution, is being held in solitary confinement in temperatures that exceed 100 degrees and authorities tried to force her to wear "only a T-shirt and a diaper," the website claimed.
"Please help us fight this injustice," the site said. "This insult to the American way of life."
The site's homepage shows one photo of Gristina with her children, and another of one of her beloved pigs.
The accused madam's lawyers have argued on four separate occasions that the bail was excessive, but a judge shot down the arguments each time. Gristina's lawyer, Gary Greenwald, has now filed an appeal at the state level.
"We have created our website to tell you our story, about how much we miss our Mom, and what you can do to bring her back to us," reads a message on the home page of the site set up by Gristina's husband Kelvin Gorr.
"There is never a day, a morning, an hour, a minute that goes by that we don’t miss our Mother, Anna Gristina-Gorr. To us, she is the woman who we call for when we are sick, who goes to our school plays and soccer games, who smiles in our eyes. She is Mom," a note on the site said.
The note added that it is not fair that Gristina is locked up because "she hasn’t been convicted of anything."
"Our small family cannot afford the huge bail amount set for her — two million dollars!" the note continued. "We are hoping that you will donate to help us pay for her bail, so she can live at home before the trail (sic). We need our Mom here. Without her, part of our family’s life is missing."
Gristina is being held in solitary confinement with "rats and roaches scurrying all around her," according to the site.
"The authorities humiliated her further by attempting to make her wear only a T-shirt and diaper," the site says.
The site touts Gristina's work with animal rescue charities and her work with pigs in particular.
"Anna and her organization provide food and healthcare for the animals, and find them loving homes," it said. "Without the help of Anna, many animals would be left out in the cold."
The city's Department of Correction denied the allegations about Gristina's treatment that were made on the website.
"There's absolutely no truth to it," spokeswoman Sharman Stein said.
According to the DOC, Gristina is being held in protective custody and is allowed to leave her cell during the day with an escort.