Huffpost Chicago

Michael Wellek, Strip Club Owner Found With $12M Cash, Sentenced For Tax Crimes

Posted: Updated:

CHICAGO — A prominent Chicago-area strip club owner found with $12 million in cash has been sentenced to a year in prison for tax crimes.

A tearful Michael Wellek of Libertyville told a federal judge Friday that he took full responsibility for his actions. He'd faced a maximum sentence of six years.

Internal Revenue Service agents raided a warehouse near one club in 2003 and confiscated $12 million in cash stuffed in bags and boxes. Wellek argued in a 2004 lawsuit that he was holding the cash until he could count it.

The 63-year-old Wellek pleaded guilty in November to failing to file a tax return for 2000 and to obstructing the IRS. Prosecutors have said he didn't pay personal income taxes for several years while his clubs apparently generated hefty profits.