Operation G-Sting was an FBI probe into bribes and unreported campaign contributions taken by Clark County Commissioners in Clark County, Nevada and city council members in San Diego, California. The scandal portion, was also known as Strippergate, especially in San Diego. These bribes were from the same lobbyist, representing strip clubs.
A separate arms dealing investigation was also started after the Operation G-Sting investigation, it also ended around the same time as the strip club investigation.
On February 20, 2003, FBI, DEA and IRS agents removed material and documents from the Crazy Horse Too as part of a lengthy criminal investigation. As part of that investigation George Clooney, Robert De Niro, and Joe Pesci were interviewed. Locally, the investigation became known as G-Sting. The case ended in 2006 when 17 defendants pleaded guilty to various offenses. As a part of the plea bargain Rick Rizzolo was ordered to sell the Crazy Horse within one year.
Political corruption convictions
The investigation resulted in the convictions of several high-profile Clark County politicians from both the Democratic and Republican Parties on federal corruption charges, including former Clark County commissioners Dario Herrera (D), Erin Kenny (D), Mary Kincaid-Chauncey (D) and Lance Malone (R).
In San Diego, three democratic city council members were accused of corruption: Ralph Inzunza, Michael Zucchet, and Charles L. Lewis. Inzunza and Zucchet were convicted, though Zucchet was later cleared of all charges due to lack of evidence. Lewis died of unrelated health issues prior to the trial.
- Jack Galardi – Businessman and father of Michael
- Michael Galardi – Strip club owner of Jaguars and Cheetah's strip clubs. Galardi admitted that he had paid various public officials between $200,000 and $400,000.
- Lance Malone – Lobbyist, former county commissioner (Clark County, Nevada).
- Tony Montegna – Undercover informant, key witness
- Rick Rizzolo – Strip club owner
- Charles Tappe – Street arms dealer
- John D'Intino – Strip club manager and friend of Jack Galardi
|This article needs additional citations for verification. (July 2007)|
- CLARK COUNTY COMMISSION: Corruption cases cloud races
- Coffey, Daniel (October 14, 2010). "Justice undone: Michael Zucchet and Ralph Inzunza". San Diego Daily Transcript. Retrieved 2 September 2012.
- Levitan, Corey (2008-03-02). "TOP 10 SCANDALS: GRITTY CITY". Las Vegas Review-Journal. Retrieved 2008-03-03.
- Jordan, Brent, Stripped: Twenty Years of Secrets from Inside the Strip Club, 2004, ISBN 0-9703441-2-0
- "Cheetah's owner to contest LV fine". Las Vegas Review-Journal. 2004-01-24.
- "FBI raids Vegas strip clubs, San Diego city offices". CNN. 2003-05-15.
- "Patriot Act aided Feds in probe". Las Vegas Sun. 2003-11-04.