Wednesday, May 04, 2016

Anti-lap dancing campaign claims another bar: provincial liquor authorities order Bar Alfonso closed

 Provincial authorities have shut down another Montreal strip club based on a recent legal interpretation that deems lap dancing to be a form of prostitution.
  The Alfonso Bar, previously known as Cabaret Bazaz and The Zipper at 9780 Gouin in Pierrefonds, had its bar permit, and strip club license revoked in a Régie des alcools des courses et des jeux (RACJ) ruling dated April 13 and signed by magistrates Saifo Elmi and Marc Savard.
   A dozen days earlier RACJ magistrate Louis A. Cormier upheld another decision to revoke the strip club license from the Sexe D'Or strip club, which also belonged to Xiao Shuang Li.
   Li purchased Bar Alfonso in May 2015, with manager Pierre Cardinal also owning a share.  
   The list of infractions cited in the ruling against Bar Alfonso are few and do not appear to contravene rules established in 1999 when lap dancing was declared legal.

   Alfonso sits in a structure built in 1950 which housed a restaurant until the mid-1980s when it was became the Alfonso strip club, owned by numbered company represented by James Kouri, who sold it in 2003.
  New owners named it the Bazaz and then the Zipper before new owners returned to its old name.
  The bar attracted some attention in 2009 when management put up a humorous sign describing some ofthe dancers as ecoeurante et tres pesante disgusting and very heavy.
   The bar had its license revoked in 2006 and was the scene of some street gang friction in 2008 and 2009, leading to a 35-day suspension but none of those incidents were referenced in the recent decision.
   In July 2012 dancers Jingle and Melanie told undercover officers that they could touch their bodies except for their private parts in dances - in other words a lap dance - which is standard for such places and which was not considered illegal until the recent interpretation.
  Like the Sexe D'Or judgment, the decision makes reference to the Bedford case, a Supreme Court decision which prosecutors argued outlaws lap dances,which were deemed legal in 1999.  
  Section 92 of the ruling reads "Contact dances remain an act of prostitution, following the Bedford case. However dancing in front of a client without touching is not a sex act."
   That legal interpretation led the RACJ to close the Sexy Hollywood bar in Saint Jerome in a ruling by magistrates Louise Marchand and Saifo Elmir on June 16, 2015.
  Since then the Sexe D'Or and now the Alfonso have been ordered shut based on the same logic.
  Saifo, who signed on to two of the three decisions, does not appear to have a legal background, as he graduated the University of Sherbrooke with an BA in administration in 1975.
   The Alfonso was open as recently as Saturday night, perhaps pending appeal.
   One visitor who described his visit Saturday on the discussion forum described the club as "a mere speck of what it used to be."
   The ruling means that the 20-or-so strip clubs remaining on the island - down from over 70 in the 1980s - can all be ordered closed on short notice (Duplessis' old  Padlock Lawt? - Chimples)  as they all offer what are suddenly classified as prostitution-style dances. 

No comments:

Post a Comment

Love to get comments! Please, please, please speak your mind !
Links welcome - please google "how to embed a link" it'll make your comment much more fun and clickable.