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Monday, June 23, 2014

The Stripper Gang Credit Card Scam

     Dr. Zyadk Younan, a cardiologist from Homdel, New Jersey, refused to accept responsibility for $135,000 in credit card debt he had supposedly incurred in early 2014 at a strip club in Manhattan, New York called Scores. Dr. Younan claimed that strippers at Scores had spiked his drinks with drugs to incapacitate him while they swiped his credit card without his authorization or knowledge. Had the physician's credit card tab not been so outrageously high, his claim of victimhood may have fallen on deaf ears.

     In the spring of 2014, DEA agents and officers with the NYPD launched a undercover investigation into Dr. Younan's allegations. As it turned out, it seemed the doctor and several other club patrons had been drugged and ripped-off.

     According to the results of the joint investigation, strippers from Scores and the RoadHouse Gentleman's Club in Queens conducted fishing expeditions at bars in Manhattan and Long Island looking for potential credit card victims. They began looking for patrons they could drug and rip-off in September 2013. The suspects allegedly set up club dates with these men, encounters that led to spiked drinks and credit card fraud. Once the suspects dropped the stimulant methylone, commonly known as molly, or the tranquilizer ketamine into their targets' drinks, they were able to take advantage of their drug addled customers. (I presume strippers earn commissions based on bar tabs.)

     According to investigators, the suspects believed that if challenged, their victims could be blackmailed into silence. According to reports, some of these men were blackmailed by members of the credit card scam.

     On June 11, 2014, police officers and federal agents arrested four strippers and the manager of Scores on charges of grand larceny, assault, and forgery. At their arraignments in Manhattan, all of the suspects, including club manager Carmine Vitolo, and the suspected ringleader, Samantha Barbash, pleaded not guilty to the charges. 

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