Wednesday 16 January 2019

Drugs officers 'ran Sopranos style strip club in New Jersey'

James Gandolfini, left, Steven Van Zandt and Tony Sirico, right, members of the cast of the HBO cable television mob drama
James Gandolfini, left, Steven Van Zandt and Tony Sirico, right, members of the cast of the HBO cable television mob drama "The Sopranos."

Philip Sherwell New York

The Twins Go-Go Lounge, in New Jersey, has all the sleazy trappings of the fictional Bada Bing lap dance club frequented by the mobsters in 'The Sopranos' television crime drama.

Now, in a legal twist that could have come straight from a script of the mafia series, federal prosecutors have claimed that the club was co-owned and managed by two officers from the Drug Enforcement Agency.

By day, David Polos, a 20-year DEA veteran, was a special agent in the agency's New York organised crime and drugs task force that targets major narcotics traffickers. By night, he allegedly swaggered around the gloomy interior of the Twins bar, where bikini-clad women writhed on stage around brass poles and conducted illegal cash-for-sex deals in private "lap dance" rooms.

Mr Polos (51) apparently made little attempt to hide his law enforcement background from customers, bragging that he was a "fed", flashing his DEA badge and at times showing a gun strapped to his leg, according to the complaint.

He was allegedly assisted at the club by Glen Glover (45), a telecommunications specialist with the DEA. The two men's alleged business sidelines were exposed in federal court in Manhattan this week when they were charged with lying during national security background checks about other employment interests.

Lawyers for Mr Polos, who resigned from the DEA last month, and Mr Glover, who has been placed on administrative leave, said on Tuesday that their clients would fight the charges in court.

According to the charges, the men employed undocumented immigrants from Brazil and Russia who were not permitted to work in America and who performed sex acts in exchange for money at the club.

Mr Glover was supposed to be "in charge of dealing with the dancers" and he allegedly collected "house fees" from the women of $10 to $30 (€15-€45) a night to perform at the club.

Mr Polos spoke freely about his law enforcement role and even joked about bringing along the president while he was on a visit to New York to "check out" the dancers, prosecutors said.

"Once during an argument … Polos lifted up his pant [trouser] leg, pointed to a gun on his ankle and said, in sum and substance, 'This is the boss. I am the boss'," the complaint charged.

Mr Polos and Mr Glover appeared in court and were released while proceedings continue.

Irish Independent

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