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
checks out before he and
Rizzolo get "quality time" together
VEGAS by Steve Miller
March 26, 2007
strip club moguls Rick
Rizzolo (left) and Mike Galardi (right) were expected to spend five
months together in the same minimum security prison, but Galardi is
probably having second thoughts after reading last
Sentenced to 30 months for bribing Las Vegas and San Diego politicians,
Galardi is still wondering why his Vegas competitor Rizzolo is getting
off with a much lighter sentence -- only 12 months for racketeering
which included dozens of Crazy Horse Too patrons being beaten if they
refused to sign bogus credit card receipts.
Last week, I warned Rizzolo and Galardi: "Maybe by
now Galardi has had time to figure out just who fingered him, and
wonder why he's getting so much harsher a sentence than Rizzolo who
obviously has much better political
And after (Vinny) Faraci vacates TCI (Taft Correctional Institution)
leaves Rizzolo unprotected, Galardi, who's as big as a bear and was a
standout University of Nevada Reno football player, will have seven
months alone with Rizzolo to ask questions and settle their
differences. At that time, Rizzolo's political connections may not be
able to help him."
Few who are familiar with the
brutality at the Crazy Horse will shed a
tear if Rizzolo is assigned the bunk above Big Bubba, but Galardi has
never been known to condone violence at his former strip clubs, and
some were concerned that he might try to take out revenge on the guy
who fingered him if he was forced to spend "quality time" at the same
Days after my March 19 article
appeared on AmericanMafia.com, attorneys for Mike Galardi asked the
judge to sentence their client to a different low security prison.
On March 23, the Las
Vegas Review-Journal reported: "Galardi's lawyer,
Robert Rose, asked that his client serve his term in Lompoc, Calif.,
Sheridan, Ore., or Yankton, S.D., all facilities that offer drug and
alcohol rehabilitation programs. The federal camp in Taft, Calif., the
facility originally requested by Galardi, has no such program."
Based on the fact that Galardi
was never known to have a drug or alcohol problem, this is a strange
Maybe the reality of his one and a half years more of incarceration
Rizzolo has just begun to sink in. Galardi admitted to bribing every
politician he could, but he learned his trade from Rizzolo who was not
punished for doing the same thing.
McDonald and Mike Galardi in San Diego (FBI photo)
It was Rizzolo who
first paid then-LV Councilman Mike
McDonald $5,000 per month "consulting
fees" to allegedly harass Galardi and other strip club owners.
Galardi also began paying
McDonald $5,000 per month to
reportedly leave him alone, Rizzolo was heard on wire taps mocking
Galardi and calling him stupid.
Rizzolo continued paying McDonald, an ex-cop, and
and robberies at the Crazy Horse continued while McDonald's cronies
at Metro P.D. looked the other way while reportedly accepting comps
in the club's V.I.P. room.
In addition to McDonald, Rizzolo tried to pay off David Roger, the
local District Attorney. After I exposed the attempt in an article I
authored for TwistedBadge.com,
Roger hastily returned Rizzolo's money, but still
dutifully dropped all prosecutions associated with Rizzolo's club.
Neither Roger nor McDonald were prosecuted for accepting Rizzolo's
but several San Diego City Councilmen and four Clark County
Commissioners were sentenced to prison for accepting Galardi's cash.
called the money "consulting fees," and Roger called it "campaign
contributions." Those who were convicted conveniently
"forgot" to report it on their IRS or campaign contribution forms. But
birds of a feather clearly flocked together on this one
even though some got away with only their feathers ruffled.
Nonetheless, Galardi testified that McDonald was one of the politicians
he bribed, but somehow the slick politician has escaped prosecution --
so far, and Roger did say he returned Rizzolo's money...
Another politician who escaped by the skin of his teeth is LV Mayor
Oscar Goodman. To prove my point, Goodman was forced to abstain on
all items that come before his City Council that pertain to Rizzolo or
the Crazy Horse. Nonetheless, Goodman over the years has made a fortune
defending guys associated with the Crazy Horse, and his two law
partners David Chesnoff and Jay Brown continue to rake in big bucks
defending and representing Rizzolo's cronies.
Rizzolo was also not charged with paying off several local
All of this in combination with Galardi's additional 18 months behind
bars was probably enough reason for Galardi's lawyers to beg the court
to reassign him in order to keep their client away from Rizzolo.
Correctional Institution Satellite
Camp (AmericanMafia.com photo by Steve
I agree with Galardi's attorneys. Mike
Galardi being locked up near his main accuser could tempt him to do
something he'd later regret. Taft Camp is a country club compared to
the medium security prison next door; a place that's a very convenient
receptacle for anyone found breaking rules (or necks) at the adjacent
In a way I feel sorry for Galardi who has no history of violence. He
children he adores, and he never beat up or killed
anyone as did Rizzolo. Though both will emerge from confinement
multimillionaires, In my opinion, Galardi should emerge much sooner
I've known Mike's dad Jack Galardi for over two decades. I've attended parties
at his home, and Jack's always been a generous contributor to my
Jack Galardi (Courtesy
If Mike had heeded
his dad's wishes and actions, he'd never have ended up in this mess.
When Jack donated money to my campaigns, he always gave it in the form
of a check from his "Mr. G's Catering," or "Galardi Enterprises." Also,
after I had accepted and reported his campaign contributions (totaling
$15,000 over a 13 year period) Jack never called to ask for favors.
Jack also never tried to hide his feelings about Rizzolo or the
politicians on Rizzolo's payroll.
In 2000 when I led a campaign to recall
Mike McDonald who was Rizzolo's biggest stooge on the City Council,
Jack happily donated a check for $5,000 to the cause. (The recall did
not succeed, but Steve orchestrated
a campaign that unseated McDonald at the next election.)
Jack Galardi is the largest strip club owner in the country. He owns
over 40 clubs throughout the U.S., causing Rizzolo to be jealous and
making him look small time.
Jack never appreciated Rizzolo's method of operation including the
beatings, extortion, or political bribes. Over the years, Jack was
known to have advised his stepson Mike to avoid Rizzolo and his gang at
all costs. That lasted until Mike got his own club, Cheetah's, and
McDonald went into action.
At first I thought Mike Galardi would take legal action to stop the
harassment. Instead he decided to fight fire with fire and hired
McDonald. Jack was furious!
But that wasn't the last straw in their faltering father/son
relationship. Jack had always been adamant about Mike staying far away
from Rizzolo's cronies including Joey
Cusumano who at the time was housing
McDonald rent free in a million dollar Canyon Gate Golf Course
villa just down the street from Rizzolo's estate.
When Cusumano was spotted driving around town in Mike Galardi's red
Ferrari, Jack reportedly blew his top!
From that moment on, Mike was on his own. And we sure know how that
Well, it's now reported that Mike and Jack have reconciled, especially
after the fate the courts dealt the younger Galardi. Jack knows all too
well that in Sin City, it's who you know, not what you did.
Back in January 2004, Mayor Goodman helped his law firm's former and
present Crazy Horse clients by spearheading a $1
million fine on their closest competitor Cheetah's -- a fine based
on Mike Galardi pleading guilty to bribing public officials. Goodman
also shut down Treasures,
another nearby competitor. In the meantime, Rizzolo's goons continued
to beat up and extort Crazy Horse customers with no action taken by the
Jack sat silently in the Council Chambers watching as Rizzolo fulfilled
his vendetta through his lackeys on the Council.
Because of his obvious bias, I
felt compelled to file an ethics
against the Mayor. Based on it, Goodman no longer participates in
discussions or votes that affect the Crazy Horse, but he still has
on City staff to do his bidding.
Three years after he paid the City the million dollar fine -- after his
son fully cooperated with the Federal Prosecutors and Rizzolo refused
to do the same -- Jack Galardi again watched as his only son was
sentenced to almost three times the punishment of Rizzolo. Jack decided
to move from Las Vegas.
Though I don't condone Mike Galardi bribing public officials, I abhor
the violence Rizzolo routinely used to extract money from his patrons
at the Crazy Horse Too. I also abhor the unequal treatment afforded the
two men by our criminal justice system.
If Mike Galardi were to lose
his temper and extract
revenge on Rizzolo, it would be his father and his kids who ultimately
pay the price if his sentence were extended or he was transferred to a
more secure facility. So it's best that Mike be placed as far
away from Rizzolo as possible.
Now, I hope you understand why I wrote those foreboding words in last
Next week: Advice to Rick, Vinny, and Mike from INSIDE VEGAS
(Photos of Rick Rizzolo and Mike Galardi courtesy of the Las Vegas Review-Journal.)
© Steve Miller
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