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Thursday, August 10, 2006

Nickels Will Not Retract Unfounded Allegations

Posted by on August 10 at 13:35 PM

Last month, Mayor Greg Nickels made a splash in the press with apparently unfounded allegations linking Rick’s strip club to organized crime. The allegations came as Nickels was pushing for his proposal to create a strip-club zone south of downtown on a local cable call-in show. Nickels said he believed Rick’s, which was implicated in the “Strippergate” campaign-contribution scandal, was engaged in “an organized attempt to buy influence on the council.” Some people would call that “lobbying”, but Nickels said it’s how he “defines organized crime.”

Two weeks ago, Rick’s attorney Gil Levy struck back, urging Nickels to “reconsider and retract your recent public statements in which you claim that ‘organized crime’ is involved in my client’s business.”

Given the scope of the [Strippergate] investigation, and given the diligence of the Deputy Prosecutors who conducted the investigatoin, one can reasonably assume that any and all criminal conduct in which my client and its principals might have been engaged would have been discovered and appropriate charges filed. …

You claim that my client is linked to organized crime because of amounts spent on the [lap-dance ban repeal] referendum campaign, (approximately $500,000 including amounts contributed by others). The reason that you and the public are aware of this amount is because the Campaign organization has scrupulously complied with campaign finance disclosure laws. More importantly, according t public records you spent over a million dollars in the 2005 election when you did not face a serious challenger. No one would have the temerity to suggest you are associated with organized crime based upon the amount you spent on your reelection campaign. For the same reason there is no basis for you to make a similar charge against my client.

Levy went on to offer Nickels “a complete and thorough inspection of my financial records by any independent auditing agency that you suggest, and will pay for the cost of the audit.” I have a call in to Deputy Mayor Tim Ceis to find out why the mayor didn’t respond to Levy’s offer.

Read the whole letter here.

CommentsRSS icon

He's probably correct, but as you say, unless he has proof, he shouldn't say that.

Heard the latest underwater tunnel reason: it's for "port security" ...

Levy's wrong on one point: Big Greg spent $1million plus TOTAL for his election AND re-election - around a half mil in 05.

Hate to agree with Nickels but, even though the criminal case was tossed on a technicality, the Colacurcios clearly bundled cash through family and friends, in a very organized criminal manner - and that wasn't lobbying, it was an attempted payoff. You'll also remember they at one point were willing to settle the city ethics case, but the board wanted more than a cash settlement.

Free the strippers!!! HOW can it be that there are not more important things to deal with in a city of this size?!!? On a side note, when will I be able to take toothpaste on a plane again?

Maybe it is because the Mayor "WASP" Nickels feels that it isn't a racial slur to suggest that an Italian-American family which owns a legally operating entertainment business (albeit one were the ladies get naked) must have Mafia connections. I am not going as far as to say Nickels is a bigot (but, what if they were an African-American family and instead of a strip club, it was a hip-hop club and he stated that family were connected to the Crips or Bloods street gangs? would that be different? or as "forgivable" as he thinks it is), but since he had no facts, it is obvious that he is pissed (or embarassed) that they caught him talking out his ass.

Ricks is totally the bada bing of Seattle.

The Mayor is out of line. If he has facts which might lead to a conviction he should turn them over to the FBI. If he doesn't have the goods he should shut up.

Hey Will in Seattle, if we used the standard that you need proof before you say it the Stranger could bnever put out a paper.

Hey Will in Seattle, if we used the standard that you need proof before you say it the Stranger could never put out a paper.

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