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Mafia museum founder hit with class action by investors

Readers in Las Vegas may have heard of the Las Vegas Mob Experience, a museum dedicated to the Mafia that opened at the Tropicana resort-casino in March 2011. The museum, which cost $25 million to open, wound up in bankruptcy and is now operating at the Mob Attraction under new ownership. Now the former owner of the attraction is facing several lawsuits from investors accusing him of fraud and theft of company funds.

A newly filed class action suit that purports to represent investors in the Mob Experience is seeking more than $7.5 million in compensation, plus punitive and other forms of damages. The lawsuit accuses the museum’s found and his company of self dealing, or using investors’ money for their own purposes, and misleading the plaintiffs by claiming that their investments were “fully secured” by the museum’s memorabilia, which included weapons reportedly owned by Mafia figures and photographs of mob figures. But when the Mob Experience filed for bankruptcy, the plaintiffs found their money was gone, the lawsuit claims.

The defendant’s home is also the subject of legal controversy. Previously filed lawsuits accused him of converting museum funds to buy his $1.3 million home.

Responding to the class-action suit, the defendant said that most of the former investors are not on board with the lawsuit. He said that an attorney for the lead plaintiff contacted him to seek his cooperation so that they could get a payment out of his company’s insurance company. He has also denied stealing from the museum to pay for his house.

Source: VEGAS INC, “Las Vegas Mob Experience developer hit with class-action investor lawsuit,” Steve Green, Oct. 4, 2012

· Our law firm represents businesses in class action lawsuits and other complex litigation. For more information, please visit our Las Vegas complex litigation page.

John P. Aldrich
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