02/05/2013 06:14 pm ET

Wedding Scam: 53 Couples Lose Thousands Of Dollars In Wedding Con (VIDEO)

A dream Las Vegas wedding has turned into a nightmare for 53 devastated couples across the country.

Las Vegas wedding venue Griffin Mansions was shut down due to health code violations in May 2012, but the owners of the lavish estate continued booking weddings for dates through 2014 anyway, The Today Show reported Tuesday. Now, 53 couples are coming out with their stories, saying the owners have refused to refund them for weddings they knew would never happen.

Griffin Mansions, run by husband and wife Anthony Lopez and Portia Latawiec, was shut down after officials discovered that the business had been operating without the correct permits for years, and a guest at one wedding got sick from norovirus. But as Las Vegas news station News 3 revealed in a hidden camera investigation in July 2012, Latawiec and Lopez continued to schedule weddings and told customers they had the proper licenses, even though they had been shut down and would not be able to hold any more weddings.

One bride, Wendy Rowland, told News 3 that her August 2012 wedding was cancelled after she'd paid the mansion $16,600 for use of the space. The venue's owners refused to refund her money.

"I have been crying for three days, not sleeping," Rowland said. "It's bad memories, and you're supposed to have amazing memories of this day."

Watch the video above for more on the Griffin Mansions scam.

Though disaster struck for these couples before their Big Days, sometimes the wedding day itself goes less-than-smoothly. For this couple, everything from the venue to the flowers to the groom's tuxedo went wrong. And at one California wedding, police were called when more than 100 drunken guests started a violent fight.

Click through the slideshow below to read the worst wedding stories shared on Reddit.

Worst Wedding Day Stories From Reddit

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