Desperado’s Case Update

The feds are taking steps to seize ownership of property associated with the now-closed Desperado's Gentlemen's Cabaret.

The U.S. Attorney's Office filed civil case papers that identify the land and building in Carencro, which was raided by authorities in December in a drug and prostitution investigation.

James Panos the club owner was indicted on December 19th on one count of conspiracy to operate drug involved premises.

Diversified Asset Group a Baton Rouge based company owns the property that the feds want to seize.

Desperado's Recends Change of Venue Request

The owner of Desperado's Cabaret Strip Club in Carencro has decided he doesn't want his federal trial moved out of Lafayette.

Lafayette attorney Scott Iles says James Panos asked to withdraw a his previous request to move his trial outside of the city.  Panos claimed that publicity in the case would make it difficult to seat an unbiased jury. 

Back in December, Panos was arrested during a raid by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency.  He pleaded not guilty to a federal charge of conspiracy to maintain a drug-involved premises.

Desperado's Owner Seeks Change of Venue

The owner of Desperados' Cabaret has filed a motion in federal court seeking to move his trial out of Lafayette. James Panos stated in the motion that media coverage has prejudiced potential jurors.

Panos also stated that he wants a review of the government's case against him, including a sample of any illicit drug on which federal prosecutors have based their case against him.

His attorney Scott Iles wrote in the motion that his client wants enough of a drug sample so that an independent chemist can analyze the substance.

Panos was indicted in December on one count of “maintaining drug involved premises”


Desperados Owner in Court

Desperado's Cabaret, a Carencro Gentleman's Club, was raided by federal, state and local agents on December 5th after an investigation was launched in 2010 by drug enforcement authority.  Several Desperado's employees were arrested on drug charges.

The owner of the establishment James Panos, of Broussard, was also arrested by federal agents on a charge of; “maintaining-a-drug-involved-premises”.

Friday Panos had his day his court. Panos has been in custody since the raid and was released Friday on a $50,000 bond.

With family and friends in the courtroom, Panos listened on as federal prosecutors questioned the lead D.E.A agent, Kerry Falcon.               

Falcon spoke of  alleged prostitution in the clubs VIP room, which Falcon said was littered with drugs, used condoms and said those who worked in that room said  anything you want you can have.

Flacon also spoke of Panos home which was raided, were allegedly cocaine, steroids, meth and 8 firearms were found. 

U.S magistrate Judge Micheal Hill determines there was sufficient probable cause to hold Panos, but Panos did not meet other conditions that justified holding him in jail until his trial.

Panos attorney spoke to me after the hearing on. Now Desperado's remains closed at this time because the state suspended their liquor license.

A hearing for that is set for Jan 9th where it could be reinstated.  In that case the judge may  he may change the conditions of Panos' release.

Rob Malia


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