Cheektowaga Nightclub Pleads Guilty To Federal Charges

May 12, 2011 Updated May 12, 2011 at 3:32 PM EDT

By WKBW News

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Cheektowaga Nightclub Pleads Guilty To Federal Charges

May 12, 2011 Updated May 12, 2011 at 3:32 PM EDT


BUFFALO, N.Y.--( release) U.S. Attorney William J. Hochul, Jr. announced today that Tally- Ho Entertainment LLC, d/b/a Rick’s Tally Ho, pleaded guilty to making a place available for use for the purpose of storing, distributing, and using a controlled substance before U.S. District Court Judge Richard Arcara. The charge carries a maximum penalty of five years probation and a $2,000,000 fine.

Assistant U.S. Attorneys George C. Burgasser and Mary C. Kane, who are handling the case, stated that from approximately December 2009 through March, 2010, the defendant permitted Jay Vellon and others to store heroin and drug paraphernalia, and to distribute and use heroin, at 5111 Genesee Street, Cheektowaga, New York. Specifically, during that period of time, Tally-Ho Entertainment LLC operated that location as a strip club and bar. The defendant made the club, through persons in authority, available to Vellon to distribute heroin, and to dancers to store, share, use and distribute heroin at the club. The defendant was aware that Vellon and various dancers were engaged in the distribution of heroin and was aware that various dancers were storing, sharing, using and distributing heroin at the club. As part of the plea, Tally-Ho Entertainment LLC provided to the Government the sum of $350,000, which will now be deemed forfeited.

Twenty seven individuals, including Jay Vellon, were charged in March 2010 following a joint federal, state and local takedown at Rick’s Tally Ho in Cheektowaga and 24K Solid Gold in Hamburg. Tally- Ho Entertainment LLC was charged separately by an information filed with the Court at the time of the plea. With today’s proceedings, twenty three defendants have been convicted. The charges against the remaining four defendants are pending. The fact that a defendant has been charged with a crime is merely an accusation and the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

The plea is the culmination of an investigation on the part of Special Agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigations , under the direction of Acting Special Agent in Charge Richard W. Kollmar.