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Racketeer Sentenced To 20 Years Over Prostitution Ring

October 3, 1988 GMT

APPLETON, Wis. (AP) _ A convicted racketeer was sentenced Monday to 20 years in prison for his involvement in a network of massage parlors that were transformed into houses of prostitution.

The trial turned over a lot of rocks in the quiet community and shocked many residents.

William J. Evers, 49, will be eligible for parole in seven years. He faced a maxiumum of 313 years in prison.

Outagamie County Circuit Judge Dennis Luebke, who gave Evers credit for 18 months of pre-sentence confinement, criticized him for continuing to be involved in the massage parlor business after being sentenced to prison on related charges.

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At a preliminary hearing, a judge blamed the community for the prostitution problem.

″None of it would have been possible without the patronage of the people of the Fox River Valley,″ Reserve Judge Albert Twesme of Galesville said. ″They are the ones who made all this despicable behavior possible. It was they who made these activities lucrative.″

Twesme said he had been shocked by testimony that some of the prostitutes were busiest after Sunday church services.

Reading from a statement prior to sentencing, Evers said he regretted his actions for the past five years, especially their impact on his wife, Anita.

″I apologize to the court, the community and especially my family,″ he said.

″There’s no doubt that Mr. Evers is a man of great intelligence, a natural born leader of people. He views himself as a superior human being; a player that dictates to society and individuals that are weaker than himself,″ Prosecutor John Des Jardins said.

Des Jardins said rehabilitation was ″an impossibility for Mr. Evers at this point. In effect it almost becomes a hobby for Mr. Evers to try to outwit society.″

On July 23, a jury convicted Evers of 23 felony charges and one misdemeanor.

Evers was convicted of three counts of racketeering, two counts of allowing the continued use of a place of prostitution, 18 counts of establishing a person in a place of prostitution, and one count of misdemeanor theft.

He was found innocent of 11 counts of causing a person to practice prostitution and one count of soliciting a person to practice prostitution.