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Alleged john's trial hinges on woman's sex ledger

ALFRED, Maine, Aug. 20 (UPI) -- A Maine hockey coach accused of hiring a Zumba instructor who was allegedly a prostitute on the side said he thought he was in a relationship with the woman.

Defense lawyers for Donald Hill, the former prep hockey coach at Kennebunk High School, said nude photos of him posing with Alexis Wright, a local Zumba instructor, don't depict any sex acts or any money changing hands as a result during the first day of defense testimony at Hill's prostitution trial, the Portland Press Herald said Tuesday.

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Absent visual evidence of prostitution, prosecutors said they will rely on a meticulous ledger Wright kept to track each of her clients, the dates she saw them, the sex acts performed and the money the johns paid.

Defense lawyers sought to suppress the ledger as evidence. Hill has said he thought he was in a relationship with Wright and any of the money he gave her was never intended as a payment for sex.

RELATED 10-month sentence for Wright in Kennebunkport prostitution case

The case has rocked the small town of Alfred, Maine, where scores of men have been accused of paying Wright for sex. Hill, 53, is the first of the 68 alleged johns charged with hiring Wright to take his case to trial. The others have pleaded guilty, no contest or are awaiting trial.

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Wright, 30, pleaded guilty to 14 counts of prostitution and is currently serving a 10-month jail sentence.

A judge allowed Wright to invoke her Fifth Amendment rights multiple times during testimony in the case Monday. Wright contends she was convinced by her business partner, a licensed private investigator, she was working as an undercover state agent posing as a prostitute investigating "sexual deviants" in the area. The ledger, she said, was to keep track of her investigation.

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Calling the ledger the "linchpin" in the case, Justice Roland Cole said he would rule later Tuesday on whether to present the registry to jurors as evidence.

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