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Can Can Room holding private parties, landlord’s lawyers allege

Updated October 29, 2019 - 5:00 pm

Despite having its business license revoked, the Can Can Room has hosted “private parties” and held itself out as being open, attorneys for its landlord said in court Tuesday.

The Siegel Group’s general counsel, Sean Thueson, told District Judge Mark Denton that the doors are open at the Las Vegas strip club, the cash register is on, its website is up, and “big flashing signs” outside still advertise the club.

He also said club owner Sam Aldabbagh, whom the landlord accused in a lawsuit last month of running an illegal brothel there, is at the property “every day,” and that some dancers arrive on a daily basis as well.

Thueson alleged that Aldabbagh has been holding “private parties” at the club, located just west of the Strip behind the under-construction Resorts World Las Vegas.

“There’s no reason for them to be there if they’re not operating a business, but they are,” he said.

Aldabbagh’s lawyer Tara Popova responded that the landlord’s legal team was making “unsubstantiated allegations … without any evidence whatsoever,” and that it was the first time her team was hearing about any alleged private parties at the club.

She also said her client has an office at the property that he is allowed to use “for his own personal needs,” and that his presence on-site is not evidence the club is open for business.

Thueson replied, in part, that Aldabbagh’s office has a bed and mirrored walls, and that some of the alleged “illegal activity” has taken place there.

“Calling it an office is not exactly accurate,” he said.

Denton on Tuesday issued a temporary restraining order, sought by the landlord, that instructed Aldabbagh to not operate or advertise the Can Can Room, have employees on the property, or conduct any business there.

He also scheduled a court hearing for Nov. 12.

Popova – whose client’s name also has been spelled as Aldabagh and AlDabbagh – declined to comment after the hearing Tuesday.

The Siegel Group, which acquired the commercial building that houses the Can Can Room in May, sued Aldabbagh through the property’s holding company Sept. 5. It alleged he ran an “illegal business” there in violation of state law and his lease and refused to vacate the property.

According to the lawsuit, dancers had to engage in sex acts with Aldabbagh and patrons; Aldabbagh employed a “Madam” who screened women for interviews and collected money from customers for sex acts; and the club had VIP Rooms with beds where employees performed sex acts “in exchange for compensation.”

Aldabbagh’s legal team said in court papers earlier this month that he “lawfully operated the world-famous” strip joint at 3155 Sammy Davis Jr. Drive for more than 40 years, and that his landlord launched a “campaign of harassment” against him and the club.

After he bought the building, Siegel Group founder Steve Siegel told the Las Vegas Review-Journal that he wants to turn it into a hub for eateries, as casino workers, taxi drivers and others regularly drive on Sammy Davis Jr., but the street is light on restaurant options.

According to Aldabbagh’s attorneys, the landlord wants to get the Can Can Room “out of the building at all costs.” The new owner has “asked people to lie for it” and “threatened” those who refused to go along with its “unjustified attack” on the club, the lawyers claimed in court papers.

A hearing officer revoked the Can Can Room’s business license Sept. 25, according to Clark County spokesman Dan Kulin.

Aldabbagh has appealed the decision, seeking judicial review, court records show.

Contact Eli Segall at esegall@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0342. Follow @eli_segall on Twitter.

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