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America's First Legal Male Prostitute, Markus, QUITS

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LAS VEGAS — America's first legal male prostitute has left a rural Nevada brothel after a two-month stint that generated plenty of attention but fewer than 10 paying customers.

Brothel owner Jim Davis said Friday the Shady Lady Ranch had parted ways with the "prostitude" who worked under the name Markus.

A replacement has been hired, but Davis hinted it was possible that Markus, a 25-year-old Alabama native, could be back.

"I don't know, he hasn't told us yet," Davis said.

The tiny yellow brothel is 150 miles northwest of Las Vegas.

Markus, who like other sex workers has asked that his real name not be used, didn't immediately respond to an e-mail message seeking comment.

He remained listed under the name "Markus Destin" by adult talent agency OC Modeling.

Bobbi Davis, who co-owns the brothel with her husband and runs it as its madam, told the Las Vegas Review-Journal the departure of Markus was a mutual decision.

She said the brothel would keep employing men to have sex with women, including its latest hire, a Las Vegas man in his mid-30s who works under the name Y. Not and has had about 10 customers.

The focus of the business, however, will remain on women prostitutes serving men, she said.

Male companions were "never the main course," she said. "We're going to try it for a while longer."

The Shady Lady Ranch created a stir in Nevada's brothel industry when it successfully won state and county approval to hire a male sex worker.

After hiring Markus, the Davises cut him off from speaking with reporters after his first two interviews, in which he compared himself with Rosa Parks and Mahatma Gandhi.

Markus was the subject of a first-person story by the New York Post after a female reporter hired him but said they did not have sex.

(This version CORRECTS Corrects spelling of Gandhi.)

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