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Steve Miller is a former Las Vegas City Councilman. In 1991, the readers of the Las Vegas Review Journal voted him the "Most Effective Public Official" in Southern Nevada. Visit his website at:

The Amazing Deposition of Kimtran Rizzolo

"Don't remember." "What you mean?" "Don't know."
"I need the blanket or something. I'm cold."
"I don't understand really your question."
"I don't have money now." "I spend it."
"This is very uncomfortable chair."
"I don't understand." "Explain it."

INSIDE VEGAS by Steve Miller
November 21, 2011

LAS VEGAS - Kim Nhung Tran and her first husband Phuc Du in 1981 moved from the jungles of North Vietnam to Las Vegas in order to escape Communism. Having been granted political asylum, Kim, then 28, and Phuc began their quest for the American dream; Kim cleaning apartments in North Las Vegas, and Phuc working as a porter at the Golden Nugget. Kim Nhung Tran and Phuc Du later divorced "because I was miserable," but she cannot remember when the divorce took place.

Kim went to school and became a manicurist but can't remember the name of the school or where it was located. She met Bart Rizzolo at a nail salon, but can't remember the year. They were later married, but she can't remember the date.

Thirty years after moving to Las Vegas, Kim (who now likes to be called Kimtran Rizzolo) is a widow living in a 3,600 square foot house on a half acre estate, controls bank accounts, CD's, trusts, and annuities worth several million dollars that she inherited from her late husband Bart.

In 2008, Bart and his son Rick Rizzolo's lucrative Las Vegas strip club the Crazy Horse Too was shut down. The Rizzolo's corporation pled guilty to Conspiracy to Participate in an Enterprise Engaged in Racketeering Activity between January 1, 2000, and 2005.  Frederick Rizzolo and 16 of his employees also entered guilty pleas to federal felonies. Bart Rizzolo was not individually charged for any crime.

The government  accused the Rizzolos of condoning beatings and robberies at the Crazy Horse Too including one in 2001 that rendered Kansas tourist Kirk Henry a quadriplegic. Henry sued, and later accepted a promised settlement of $10 million dollars. Rick Rizzolo plea bargained promising to pay Henry in exchange for a light prison sentence, but later reneged claiming poverty while hiding his money overseas or with his father.

Henry's initial lawsuit inspired the FBI to investigate the strip club which later resulted in its closure and forfeiture. Henry has been pursuing his unpaid settlement ever since with the court ordering the Rizzolos to pay.

Rick ended up serving less than a year in federal prison, was released and placed on parole, violated parole, and is currently back in prison serving an additional nine months for withholding information from his parole officer about financial transactions he conducted during his first prison stay, or while on supervised release.

During his first prison sentence, Rick Rizzolo in 2008 secretly sold his one third interest in the Philadelphia Crazy Horse Too for $3 million dollars to auto dealer Vince Piazza. After learning of the sale, the Federal Court ordered that the money be paid to Kirk Henry. However, an initial payment of $789,000.00 had already been secretly transferred to Rizzolo's late father Bart in order to hide the money from Henry and the IRS. After Bart passed away in 2010, the $789,000.00 was inherited by his widow Kimtran. Since receiving the initial money, Kimtran has been receiving regular payments on the balance of the $3 million, so far totaling $1,052,996.03, but in her deposition she claims to not know why she's receiving the funds, or from whom.

The American Dream?

Still claiming to not know the reason she's receiving payments from Piazza, Kimtran's attorney tried to provide some clarity in an Answer he filed to Kirk Henry's lawsuit. Attorney Herb Sachs states his client is entitled to keep the money because: "Any harm allegedly suffered by Plaintiff was caused by its own actions," and, "Any harm allegedly suffered by Plaintiff was caused by persons, firms or corporations other than Defendant," i.e., Kimtran did not personally break Henry's neck, so let her keep the money.
Though Kimtran has lived in the United States since 1980 (31 years), she now claims to not understand enough English to answer interrogatories or deposition questions about her late husband's assets deposited in her numerous bank accounts and trusts that she has failed to provide written records for. When she was offered the services of a translator, Kimtran answered "I don't know."

In her deposition, Kimtran remarkably testified that she did not know who her benefactor Vince Piazza is, or the reason he paid her over a million dollars. She also stated she did not know what her late husband did for a living, or who owned the Vegas or Philadelphia strip clubs.

It was later discovered Kimtran has been paying Rick Rizzolo's most recent attorney fees.
It will now be up to United States Federal Judge Philip Pro to force Kimtran to answer Henry's questions as to the exact location of the Philadelphia proceeds, or possibly charge her with contempt if she continues pleading ignorance.

During the initial minutes of Kimtran's October 12, 2011 deposition, Donald Campbell, an attorney for Kirk Henry, told Kimtran. "Do you understand if you don't tell the truth, that can be used to charge you with a crime?" Kimtran answered, "Yes."

Campbell went on to say, "That's not to suggest that you would commit a crime, but it's to advise you of the importance of telling the truth so you don't get charged with a crime in federal court."

Kimtran answered, "You go too far. I don't understand."

From there on based on her less-than-responsive deposition answers, it was as if Kimtran had been coached by Rick Rizzolo himself, even though the Federal Court issued an ORDER on October 27, 2011 clearly stating: "Defendant Rick Rizzolo shall not take any action, directly or indirectly or through any agents or anyone else acting on his behalf, to hinder the payments of the funds being held for or due Lions Limited Partnership to Kirk and Amy Henry in partial satisfaction of his restitution obligation to them."

Mr. Campbell: Have you ever engaged in any financial transactions or conducted any business with Rick Rizzolo?

Kimtran: Say again, please.

Campbell: Have you ever engaged in any --

Kimtran: What does that mean, "engaged"?

Campbell: Have you ever been involved in any financial transactions or business dealings with Rick Rizzolo?

Kimtran: No.

Campbell: Have you ever conducted any financial transactions involving Rick Rizzolo in any way on behalf of Bart Rizzolo?

Kimtran: Explain it.

Campbell: Have you ever conducted any financial transactions for Bart Rizzolo?

Kimtran: I still don't understand.

Campbell: Have you ever been involved with any money transactions or financial transactions involving legal documents on behalf or for your husband?

Kimtran: On behalf and for my husband? I still don't understand.

Campbell: You don't understand that question?

Kimtran: It's a little hard for me to understand.

Campbell: That's a little hard for you to understand. Let me ask a different question.

Kimtran: Simple.

Campbell: Since your husband died, have you been involved in any financial transactions involving moneys?

Kimtran: Mean? Mean what?

Campbell: Meaning have you been involved in any financial transactions --

Kimtran: From me account?

Campbell: Okay. Since your husband Bart died, have you been involved in any financial transactions involving moneys to which he is supposedly entitled?

Kimtran: Don't understand.

Campbell: Don't understand, okay. Have you been involved in any transactions where you got money since your husband died?

Kimtran: I don't understand quite what you want to know.

Campbell: Well, what I want to know is have you ever been involved in any transaction regarding --

Kimtran: What is that? I'm sorry.

Campbell: You don't know what the word "transaction" means?

Kimtran: Involved with transaction?

Campbell: But I'm only concerned with what you understand or don't understand. So is the word "involved" is, is that in some way not understood by you?

Kimtran: I don't understand that.

Campbell: You don't understand the word?

Kimtran: What you mean?

Campbell: You don't understand what the word "involved" means?

Kimtran: Right.

Campbell: Okay. Have you participated --

Kimtran: I don't understand either.

Campbell: You don't know what the word "participate" means?

Kimtran: No.

Campbell: Have you been a part of any financial transaction since Bart Rizzolo died?

Kimtran: I don't understand what you mean, though.

Campbell: I want to know whether or not you were involved in any business deals since your husband died.

Kimtran: Business deal, no.

Campbell: Any other transactions or dealings with other people where you got money on behalf of your husband?

Kimtran: On behalf of my husband? What does that mean?

Campbell: That maybe your husband was allegedly or supposedly entitled to?

Kimtran: Don't know.

Mr. Campbell went on to present several documents with the signature Kimtran Rizzolo that the witness said she did not remember reading or signing.

On page 94 of the deposition, Campbell presents a photo copy of a check from Vince Piazza to Kimtran Rizzolo for $92,000. He asked: "When you got this check for $92,000, what did you do with it?" Kimtran answered: "I Spend it." Then she changed her answer to "I deposit it."

Kimtran went on to nervously answer several additional questions truthfully, revealing that she deposited most of Piazza's payments in her account at Bank of America, opening the door for Henry's attorneys to subpoena the bank's records.

Keep in mind that Kimtran Rizzolo has lived in the United States for over thirty years; declined the service of an interpreter during her deposition; reportedly pays Rick Rizzolo's outrageous legal bills; was married for over ten years to Bart Rizzolo who spoke only English; and she is currently responsible for managing cash and assets worth several million dollars, but claims to not know the meaning of English language words including "engaged," "transaction," "involved," "participate," and "behalf."

Kimtran Rizzolo's non-answers inspired attorney Campbell on November 17, 2011 to file a MOTION TO COMPEL with the United States Federal Court asking that she be forced to answer questions about her finances.

In the MOTION, Henry's attorneys state. "Ms. Rizzolo refused to respond to Plaintiff's discovery responses concerning her financial condition. Defendant's inaction is clearly borne out of a desire to conceal her financial activity and reinforces her total disregard for the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Accordingly, it is respectfully requested that Defendant Kimtran Rizzolo be compelled to produce responsive documents and answers to Plaintiff's First Set of Interrogatories and Requests for Production. This relief is requested in addition to appropriate sanctions including but not limited to attorney's fees and costs."

Even without knowing all the details about where Kimtran stashed the Philly sale proceeds, Henry's legal team on November 7, 2011 felt confident enough about locating the funds that they filed a MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT stating: "It is respectfully requested that this Court grant summary judgment to Plaintiffs Kirk and Amy Henry in the amount of $1,052,996.03. This sum represents the total amount of money that Rick Rizzolo fraudulently transferred to Bart and Kimtran Rizzolo in order to conceal assets from Plaintiffs and frustrate their recovery of the debt owed to them. All of these funds derive from Rick Rizzolo's surreptitious sale of interest in TEZ Real Estate (Philadelphia Crazy Horse Too) and therefore rightfully belong to Plaintiffs."

With two motions sitting on Judge Pro's desk, and no expectation that the court will come close to replicating Donald Campbell's patience, it's expected that Kimtran's fate will be known within the next several weeks, and Kirk Henry may soon receive $1,052,996.03 to apply toward satisfying his court ordered restitution.

Here is Kimtran Rizzolo's amazing deposition:



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