Greasing palms at the Pure nightclub in Las Vegas could turn into a modern-day Watergate scandal, with IRS agents saying they’re going to follow the money all the way to the top.
Pure, inside Caesars Palace, was recently busted by the IRS, which contends the common practice of tipping doormen has resulted in hundreds of thousands of untaxed dollars. Computers and credit card receipts were seized, and even the private residence of managing partner Steve Davidovici was raided.
And it isn’t going to stop, according to IRS agents. The Las Vegas Sun recently disclosed a revenue-sharing agreement between the Pure and LAX nightclubs and the casinos that house them (LAX is part of the Luxor). Now former federal IRS agents say that kind of relationship should cause the IRS to extend their investigation.
"I would think there would be a good opportunity to push up the chain of command, depending on how the money is distributed," retired IRS criminal agent David Landrum Jr. told the Sun. "Proving whether the casinos are connected to those particular crimes is part of the IRS’s job."
Landrum, along with two other ex-agents, agreed that it was highly unlikely the casinos themselves would get involved in a cash-hiding conspiracy but it’s likely some rogue casino employees would find the revenue tempting.
"My gut feeling is if these guys are cheating the IRS, they’re probably also screwing the casinos," former Criminal Investigation Division supervisor John Anderson told the paper. "It’s very common when you have revenue-sharing agreements that whoever is sharing the revenue tries to hide some of it."
As for the current IRS agents, they’re not talking.