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DEKALB, Ill. (CBS) – A Sycamore attorney appeared in court this week on charges of prostitution.
Reema Bajaj, 25, of the 100 block of Penny Lane in Sycamore, appeared in court Thursday on three counts of prostitution, according to DeKalb Police Lt. Gary Spangler.
Bajaj was charged with two misdemeanors and one felony because the alleged acts of prostitution happened within 1,000 feet of a school, Spangler said.
Authorities began looking into Bajaj after they discovered emails between her a man for the purposes for prostitution during an unrelated child-pornography investigation involving someone else, Spangler said.
“It’s very unusual. To have an attorney charged with prostitution is not something you see every day. It is sad,” DeKalb County State’s Attorney Clay Campbell told CBS 2’s Kristyn Hartman.
Court documents allege Bajaj put her career on the line for a relatively small amount of money. One count says Bajaj charged $50 for sex. The other two counts put the figure at $100.
Bajaj was not home Friday. But her attorney spoke with CBS 2 about the prostitution allegations.
“This is a case where it could be easy to rush to judgment, but we would like people to wait for the facts to come out,” David Camic said.
“Nobody respects Miss Bajaj’s presumption of innocence more than I do,” Campbell, the prosecutor, said. But he added: “Just because you’re an attorney, it doesn’t give you special privileges. You break the law, and possibly you could be charged.”
The DeKalb Daily Chronicle reported last week that the charges stem from incidents dating back to Aug. 13, 2010. The August incident allegedly happened at a high-rise in DeKalb, where prosecutors alleged Bajaj had “routinely, but not exclusively” engaged in prostitution, the Daily Chronicle reported.
Prosecutors told the newspaper that Bajaj had admitted to prostitution before becoming a licensed attorney this past November, but said not since.
The ABA Journal reported that last week, Bajaj had posted a comment on her Web site that said she would “aggressively defend” herself in court, as she defended her own legal clients. But on Friday, there was no comment about the arrest on her Web site, and all comments and questions were directed to another attorney.
Bajaj appeared in court Thursday and her next appearance is scheduled for July 14, in room 204 of the DeKalb County Courthouse, 133 W. State St. in Sycamore, according to a court clerk. Details on the proceedings Thursday were not immediately available.
The Sun-Times Media Wire contributed to this report.