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Alleged Prostitutes Arrested in Lansdale Sting

Kristen Stephen, 29, of Lansdale, and Janet DeFrancesco, 34, of Lower Salford, were busted in an undercover operation that also uncovered heroin in an apartment. Also arrested was Robert DeFrancesco, 53, of Lansdale, who pleaded guilty to murder in 1985

Two women will be summoned by mail to face charges of prostitution in Lansdale Borough.

Also arrested was a York Avenue man convicted of first-degree murder in 1985.

Kristen Rachel Stephen, 29, of the 300 block of W. Main Street, Lansdale, and Janet Lee DeFrancesco, 34, of the 200 block of Danny Lane, Harleysville, were arrested in a prostitution sting conducted by Lansdale Police.

Stephen was found to have an active Montgomery County warrant from May 2012, police said. On June 13, 2011, Stephen was charged with depositing trash in the street, according to court records.

On June 13, DeFrancesco was released from custody without bail being set after District Judge Harold Borek ordered both to be summoned by mail, police said.

Stephen remained in custody and was taken to Montgomery County prison on the county warrant, police said

In late May 2012, Lansdale Police received information regarding a suspected prostitution ring operating out of an apartment on the 300 block of W. Main Street, Lansdale.

Police searched the Internet for escort advertisements in Lansdale and found seven advertisements using the name "Kelly Cruz," police said.

The ads featurd several pictures of a woman in lingerie and provided prospective customers with phone numbers to contact them, police said.

The investigating officer recognized the pictures in the ads to be Stephen, police said.

Stephen has had arrests and contacts with her before, police said.

A more recent advertisement listed both "Kelly" and "Lisa" as being available with a monetary donation suggested for an allotted time frame, police said.

"Lisa" was later identified as DeFrancesco, police said.

On June 12, surveillance was conducted on the apartment and officers allegedly observed Stephen direct an unknown male into the building, police said.

At 1:59 p.m. June 12, Lansdale Police and an undercover Pennsylvania State trooper contacted "Kelly" by phone, police said. An agreement was made to meet both women and an address on West Main Street was provided to the undercover trooper, police said.

Upon arrival at the address, the undercover trooper was provided with a second address a few doors away that Stephen soon emerged from, police said.

The trooper was led into an apartment and a call made by Stephen led to the arrival of DeFrancesco, police said.

Police said there was a discussion over money and services, and then money was exchanged. Both suspects were taken into custody.

Heroin, cocaine and marijuana; used hypodermic needles; copper wadding; pipes; burnt spoons and numerous wax baggies were found inside the apartment, police said. Ledgers and customer profile logs were also found, police said.

A third subject, Robert DeFrancesco, 53, of the 700 block of York Avenue, Lansdale, was also taken into custody. Police said there is no relation to Janet DeFrancesco.

Property belonging to Robert DeFrancesco was found in the apartment, including clothes and a cable bill in his name for the target address on West Main Street, police said.

DeFrancesco admitted to police that he sometimes stayed at the apartment and had an apartment key in his possession, police said.

DeFrancesco was charged June 13, 2012 with possession of drug paraphernalia, police said.

A detainer was filed by Pennsylvania State Parole Board, police said. Borek ordered that Robert DeFrancesco be released without arraignment or set bail and be summoned by mail, police said. 

DeFrancesco remained in custody and was transported to the Montgomery County prison for violation of state parole, police said.

Robert DeFrancesco pleaded guilty to first-degree murder in 1985 and was sentenced to 7 to 20 years in prison, according to court records.

Robert DeFrancesco was convicted for his role in the murder of Mark R. Sellers, 27, of 256 Oak Park Road in Hatfield Township on April 17, 1984.

In February 1985, Robert DeFrancesco had drug charges, including criminal attempt to manufacture, deliver or possess a controlled substance, quashed in Montgomery County Court of Common Pleas.

In October 1999, Robert DeFrancesco pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct in county common pleas court, according to court records.

ilovelansdale June 19, 2012 at 08:16 PM
i would say tho it will get better. Im 21 ans when i went to penndale there was fights every single day. jumpings happened all the time. Once I got to highschool most of the problem kids got kicked out and the others calmed down. Every year from what i have heard there are less and less fights and drugs in penndale.
West Ward June 22, 2012 at 03:23 AM
and it was the Parole Board that had to force the issue to get him to jail. Borek is clearly an idiot. Serving these folks a summons BY MAIL! Really! The PA knew this guy was bad news and the DJ turns his head? Shameful! Borek needs to go!
West Ward June 22, 2012 at 03:24 AM
Don't assume he's not coming back.
West Ward June 22, 2012 at 03:28 AM
Because, Borek clearly does not have the best interests of the community at heart. Releasing these types of criminals back where they can keep committing crime or abscond knowing that they will be summoned BY MAIL to appear at a later date. Does he think they are just going to sit around and wait for the postman? Borek unfortunately has 2 more years to his term. Remember this when it's time to vote for a District Justice. I think the Parole Agent that forced the issue and made sure he got locked up should be commended!
Countrygirl11 July 27, 2012 at 04:26 PM
..... all i want to know is why a low life like Robert DeFrancesco can walk the streets again as a freen man after taking someones life! Only in America can you take a life and not have to give yours. I know people will say "ohh dont you believe in second chances" and I say NO! look at where a second chance got Robert DeFrancesco.

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