Christopher Quinn Booking Photo
Senior Gwinnett ADA Jailed in Prostitution Case
Greg Land, Daily Report
January 18, 2017
A Gwinnett County prosecutor is facing charges of felony racketeering and misdemeanor pandering related to a raid on a Dunwoody apartment at the center of an investigation into a purported prostitution ring.
Senior Assistant District Attorney Christopher Quinn turned himself in to Dunwoody police on Tuesday in an expanding prostitution sting that began with a Dec. 29 raid at the Perimeter Center East Apartments, in which seven other people were arrested on charges including prostitution, pandering and racketeering.
Quinn, 46, was released from DeKalb County Jail on an $8,500 bond Wednesday. According to his attorney, Noah Pines, Quinn was one of 19 alleged customers of the prostitution operation charged with pandering and violating Georgia’s Racketeering Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) statute.
According to a Wednesday release from the Dunwoody Police Department, a total of 34 people have been arrested so far in connection with the multi-agency investigation into two alleged prostitution operations known as the “Atlanta Gold Club” and “Lipstick and Shoes.”
Three of those arrested are charged with misdemeanor counts of keeping a place of prostitution and pimping and felony counts of sex trafficking and of violating Georgia’s RICO statute. Fifteen more face prostitution and RICO charges, and the other 19 are charged with pandering and racketeering.
Pines, himself a former prosecutor in Fulton and DeKalb counties, said charging the alleged customers with racketeering was an “overreach” by law enforcement.
“I have never seen a RICO case target a customer, whether it’s a prostitution case or a drug case,” said Pines. “Customers are, by definition, not part of the RICO. … How can you be a part of the RICO enterprise when you’re the one paying for sex?”
Quinn’s boss, Gwinnett DA Danny Porter, said he was notified of the investigation and Quinn’s alleged involvement last week and that he had placed him under suspension Tuesday before Quinn turned himself in.
A graduate of Mercer University’s Walter F. Georgia Law School, Quinn joined the Fulton County District Attorney’s Office in 1998 where he rose to the position of senior ADA before moving to Gwinnett in 2014.
In 2006, Quinn was among the Daily Report’s “On the Rise” honorees and was lauded by judges, peers and opposing counsel. His former boss, DA Paul Howard Jr., said at the time that Quinn possessed “a nimble mind and an impressive command of the law.”
While in the Fulton office, Quinn was involved in some of Fulton’s highest-profile cases, including the 2008 murder trial of convicted courthouse shooter Brian Nichols and the Atlanta Public Schools cheating case.
Pines said Quinn has a “tremendous amount of support from the legal community, both from prosecutors and defense lawyers.”
“If you talk to other DAs, I think you’d be hard-pressed to find another case where a customer was charged with RICO,” said Pines. “This is, at best, a prostitution case.”
Pines said it was his understanding that the investigators had hidden video footage from inside the apartment allegedly used by the sex ring. “I’m investigating where that came from, whether it was a wiretap or some other means,” he said. “I’m very curious to find out how they got it.”