Steve Miller is a former Las Vegas City Councilman. In 1991, the readers
of the Las Vegas Review Journal voted him the "Most Effective Public
Official" in Southern Nevada. Visit his
website at: http://www.SteveMiller4LasVegas.com
"Was supposed Crazy Horse Too owner
Michael Signorelli serious when he claimed at this week's City Council
meeting that he would stop paying $70 per customer to the cabbies?
Let's recap: Signorelli's
not paying his rent to ousted boss Rick Rizzolo, who isn't paying his
debt to paralyzed customer Kirk Henry, who must be having trouble
paying the rent on his house these days. Is anyone paying attention?"
- John L. Smith, LV
Rizzolo's sentencing delayed one week.
Council grants 90 day
in face of multiple violations.
What in Hell is going on?
INSIDE VEGAS by Steve Miller
January 22, 2007
LAS VEGAS - Since 1999, I've been completely accurate on this
important subject though I feel like a voice in the wilderness.
Several East Coast and Mid West mob families are fighting to remain in
control of the Vegas strip club rackets, and some of them have a very
For months I've suspected that former mob attorney-cum
Mayor Oscar Goodman has been working behind the scenes to facilitate
the re-opening and continued operation of his former and present
mob client's topless bar, the Crazy Horse Too.
Before the City Council shut the place down last summer, I correctly
anticipated Goodman would change hats from Mayor back to mob lawyer and
covertly step in to help the criminals who made him rich. I even went
so far as to file a complaint
with the state Ethics
Commission to stop Goodman from participating in future discussions and
votes to re-open the place after its' owner and former Goodman law
Rizzolo and 16 of his thugs
were convicted of racketeering and tax evasion. But that didn't stop
the Mayor's efforts
behind the scenes to re-open the mobbed up
topless bar. Meanwhile, he's running unopposed for his third
term, and the local media is sadly downplaying the importance of this
story, possibly because Rizzolo is a degenerate
gambler who blows millions each year on the Strip, and Goodman is
expected to spend over a million dollars in political ad buys for his
AmericanMafia photos by Mike
it was Goodman's lackey Jim DiFiore, the city's Director of Business
Activity, who twice appeared at Council meetings with suspected front
man Mike Signorelli. DiFiore recommended Signorelli be granted a
temporary liquor license to re-open the club prior to receiving the go
ahead from the LV Metro Police Department - something totally
Metro usually takes up to six months to complete a comprehensive
background investigation of any liquor license applicant, especially
someone who wants to re-open a bar that was shut down for extorting and
beating its' customers. But DiFiore (on
couldn't wait for an investigation, and assured the Council it would be
OK to grant a
thirty-day temporary license on his word there were no areas
of concern with the background of Mr. Signorelli who was described as a
successful gaming entrepreneur who was also bidding to buy the Riviera
Seeming overly impressed, the Council asked no questions and dutifully
granted the temporary license, and
the bar that City
Attorney Brad Jerbic described as a "public
nuisance," and the U.S.
Department of justice called a "threat
to the community" was re-licensed
against the wishes of Federal officials. Because
of this, a giant can of worms was opened that the City Council can no
longer close. And re-closing the Crazy Horse was made that much
It was soon discovered that Signorelli was a bankruptcy artist who
twice in 15 years filed for protection from his debtors. Though he has
no police record, his financial background is very questionable.
Signorelli in 2000 was involved in a
action lawsuit based on allegations he stole health insurance
premiums from his employees at one of his bankrupt businesses; a casino
in Mesquite that shut down one year after opening.
Then it was disclosed his bid to buy the Riviera was turned down
because he could not produce a financial statement. This, after the
believed his line that he had the $45 million to buy the Crazy
Horse, and in the meantime would pay Rizzolo $400,000 per month --
In spite of this, no red flags were raised by the City Council or
U.S. Federal Court Chief Judge Philip M. Pro last June ordered the
Crazy Horse be sold by June 2007, but warned against selling it to any
La Cosa Nostra interest.
At least one qualified buyer offered to buy
the business and real estate, but Rizzolo killed the deal in favor of
Signorelli. The Federal Court has yet to comment on Rizzolo's
choice of buyer, but the Court must approve the sale by this June, or
business and real estate in receivership.
At an abbreviated hearing last Tuesday, Judge Pro rescheduled Rizzolo's
sentencing on his conviction for racketeering and tax evasion to this
Tuesday at 9 AM. He did this after accepting a motion in limine to reconsider his
previous decision based on a newly submitted declaration and
memorandum. It's not yet known what's contained in the declaration and
After being allowed to reopen the Crazy Horse last October, Signorelli,
against the City Council's orders, continued
employing three of Rizzolo's immediate family members as his manager,
assistant manager, and book keeper. After I informed the Council of
the relatives still working there, a special
hearing was called. At the November hearing, Signorelli tried to
explain he was too
busy to check the last names of his key employees.
The Council groveled and let him stay open, but only after a harsh
admonishment from Councilman Steve Ross and Mayor Pro Tem Gary Reese.
You'd think he'd get the hint, but Signorelli was soon having to
defend himself again.
Ninety days have elapsed since the bar re-opened, and last Wednesday
Signorelli was back before the Council to ask for another 90 day
extension of his
temporary liquor license. That's when it looked like the Council
members might get the balls to shut him down.
To bolster my suspicion that Goodman was
pulling the strings from his office on the tenth floor of City Hall,
and from his law firm on Fourth Street, Jim
was conspicuous by his absence at Wednesday's hearing after I
wrote about him in INSIDE VEGAS. But that didn't stop the covert help
from pouring in, possibly all the way from Washington, D.C.
At the January 17 Council meeting, Signorelli/Rizzolo rolled out a much
bigger gun than DiFiore in the form of Mayor Oscar Goodman's
business and law partner Jay Brown -- Mike Signorelli's new
(Since Signorelli took over the club, business has fallen to a trickle,
and it's highly questionable that he's personally paying for Brown's
being the Mayor's crony; a noted political campaign fund raiser; and Democratic Whip, U.S. Senator Harry Reid's
business partner, Jay Brown has another giant conflict of interest in
representing the Crazy Horse.
Brown, whose name has surfaced over the years in organized-crime
investigations, last month consulted for ninety minutes with Florida
night club mogul Athanasios
and his attorney. Prior to Signorelli entering the picture, Karaholios,
had made a higher bid on
the Crazy Horse, but was turned down when he reportedly
include Rizzolo as a silent partner.
Journal photo by Clint
thousands of dollars on an appraisal, environmental report,
travel, and other related expenses, Karaholios, better known as Tommy
Signorelli and Rizzolo for racketeering and fraud.
After hearing the ultimatum that Rizzolo must remain as a secret
the deal, and not knowing the local landscape or political players, Karaholios and his
California attorney made a
beeline to the
Goodman Law Group on Fourth Street thinking they might find a reputable
local attorney. There they met with Jay Brown who reportedly did not
reveal that he
were once the corporate
Agents for Rizzolo's "THE POWER COMPANY, INC."
During their consultation, Karaholios
revealed to Brown all his evidence and
strategy related to a then-proposed Federal lawsuit against
Signorelli and Rizzolo. After seeing
this confidential information, Brown reportedly offered to represent Karaholios for
a retainer of $30,000. Karaholios declined Brown's
offer, hired different counsel, and went on to sue Signorelli and
However, now armed with Karaholios' privileged
information and strategies,
Brown signed on
as Signorelli's attorney! This is an obvious violation of the Nevada
State Bar Rules of Professional Conduct.
Prior to last Wednesday's
Council meeting, upon my suggestion, Signorelli was asked to produce
canceled checks with bank stamps showing dates of deposit to
he was paying $400,000 per month rent. He could not do so.
He was also asked to provide proof he placed a $300,000 deposit in
escrow, and to prove he personally financed the expenses for re-opening
the business including purchase of liquor, and a cash reserve. He also
could not do so, but under pressure admitted that Rizzolo fronted him
The conditions he admitted to not complying with are clearly spelled
out in a CONFIDENTIAL
Purchase Agreement obtained by INSIDE VEGAS, which I shared with
all Council members before last Wednesday's hearing.
the Council and local media now have copies of his previously
and his new attorney had no choice but to tell the truth. He was not
paying rent, and Rizzolo fronted him the start up money!
But that's not all that should have triggered a red flag. It was also
disclosed that Signorelli was violating city and county laws
that prohibit businesses from bribing taxi and limo drivers for
convincing customers to come to their place of business.
to see Signorelli and Brown nervously tell the Council that things were
not as they were supposed to be. Click on "Jump to," and go to Item #
After Signorelli admitted he could not afford to pay rent because he
was being extorted out of hundreds of thousand of dollars each week by
unscrupulous taxi and limo drivers, I expected one of the Council
members to ask if this illegally paid money should instead be going to
beating victim Kirk Henry whose neck was broken in 2001 by a Crazy
Horse manager, and has since been awarded $10 million dollars by the
Federal Court, and hasn't received a dime!
(L. to R.)
victim Kirk Henry being transported to hospital after
his neck was broken by a Crazy Horse manager. Henry on life support in
Sunrise Hospital. Kirk Henry's 12-year-old son,
Jared, checks his father's blood pressure after Henry
felt light-headed. Since
his neck was broken,
problems with low blood pressure have repeatedly threatened
But the question was never asked because Henry's attorney Donald
Campbell was nowhere to be found to make the obvious inquiry, and
Henry's beating has been used by Signorelli/Rizzolo's attorneys to
elicit sympathy to convince the City Council and Federal Court to let
the place stay open long enough to be sold to generate the $10 million
needed to pay Henry's life-long medical bills and other neglected
expenses such as his mortgage.
However, it's now obvious Rizzolo has no intention of paying his legal
obligations, especially to Henry.
Not one cent has been paid to Henry, nor have the legal fees been paid
to Campbell and his partner Stan Hunterton for the excellent work they
did to expose Rizzolo and his criminal enterprise. This begs the
question: where is attorney Donald Campbell when Kirk
Henry needs him?
Federal Prosecutor-now private attorney
Donald Campbell could blow this wide open if he wanted to. But where is
Henry's health continues to deteriorate, and his family
is impoverished by Rizzolo's legal stonewalling, Rick Rizzolo last
Tuesday left the courthouse with a smile on his face.
After all this, the question remains as to why Judge Pro doesn't
liquidate the personal assets Rizzolo
fraudulently transferred to his ex-wife Lisa in a bogus
divorce on the eve
Meanwhile, the City Council dug themselves into a hole
by believing Jim DiFiore's
recommendation that Signorelli be granted a temporary liquor license.
Now the Council is forced to give the police 90
days to finish their investigation of someone who is obviously a straw
man for Rizzolo et .al. In the meantime, the place is probably
being skimmed to death.
And they said the mob left Vegas years ago...
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