June 26, 2010 in City

Strip club mogul’s son pleads guilty

Gene Johnson Associated Press
 

SEATTLE – The son of longtime Seattle strip club mogul Frank Colacurcio Sr. agreed to spend a year in prison and turn over $1.3 million Friday in a plea deal with federal prosecutors – likely making him the only defendant in the government’s case against the adult entertainment empire who will serve time in custody.

Frank Colacurcio Jr., 48, pleaded guilty to one count of racketeering conspiracy in U.S. District Court. Other charges, including mail fraud and money laundering conspiracy, will be dismissed at sentencing.

Last year prosecutors charged the Colacurcios and four associates as part of a racketeering investigation into rampant prostitution and other crimes at Seattle-area strip clubs, saying they made millions of dollars exploiting women. The associates have already pleaded guilty in deals to avoid prison and the four strip clubs they ran have been shut down.

Colacurcio Jr.’s plea leaves his 93-year-old father as the only remaining defendant, and it is unclear whether his case can proceed because he is extremely ill. Last week, his son executed power of attorney on Frank Sr.’s behalf in agreeing to forfeit his $1.7 million business property, Talents West, to the government – indicating that Frank Sr. was not competent to do so himself.

Attorneys for the Colacurcios declined to comment on Frank Sr.’s health Friday, and Emily Langlie, a spokeswoman for the U.S. attorney, said only that the government has not moved to dismiss any charges against him.

Colacurcio Sr. has been a thorn in the side of law enforcement for six decades. The son of a King County farmer, he entered the topless nightclub business after making a name for himself in Seattle’s pinball industry in the 1950s. He was identified as a racketeer in hearings before a U.S. Senate organized crime committee in 1957 and has periodically served time for racketeering and tax convictions.

Colacurcio Jr. admitted as part of the plea agreement that he managed operations at Talents West from 2006 to 2008 and allowed dancers to continue working even when he knew they were engaged in prostitution.

The prostitution was a big draw at the clubs, prosecutors said.


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