So if I was a billionaire and had a giant mansion I could build a giant underground cave complex and fight crime – or have hooker parties. With a fortune from Broadcom Henry Nicholas made an underground grotto, tunnels and a 2,000-square-foot sports bar he called “Nick’s Cafe.” Then he paid for hookers and partied all night, or at least until his wife caught him and the construction companies sued to get paid.
Flush with wealth from Broadcom Corp.’s 1998 public stock offering, computer chip magnate Henry T. Nicholas III made a few additions to his equestrian estate in Laguna Hills: hidden doors and secret levers, an underground grotto, tunnels and a 2,000-square-foot sports bar he called “Nick’s Cafe.”
But there was more, according to a claim made in court documents: plans for a “secret and convenient lair” with hidden entries for Nicholas to indulge his “manic obsession with prostitutes” and “addiction to cocaine and Ecstasy.”
Nicholas lawsuit: An article Wednesday in Business about Broadcom co-founder Henry T. Nicholas III quoted attorney Joseph Kar as saying his client, Kenji Kato, was unfamiliar with allegations in court papers against Nicholas by contractor Roman James but knew of the court case because “Nicholas had mentioned it infrequently.” Kar said Nicholas mentioned James infrequently, not the case. —
The filing in Orange County Superior Court added that Nicholas had the interior built in warehouse space nearby, which became his “personal brothel” until his wife caught him having sex with a prostitute there.
The allegations by a construction team, denounced as fabrications by Nicholas’ lawyer, echoed others in a recently surfaced lawsuit filed late last year by Kenji Kato, a Nicholas assistant from 1999 to 2006.
In his suit, Kato claims that Nicholas and his companies owe him $150,000 in back wages. Filings in the suit allege drug use and debauchery at a Newport Coast home owned by Nicholas, who denies the accusations.
Responding in a lawsuit pending in Orange County Superior Court, Nicholas has alleged that Kato is bound by confidentiality agreements that bar him from disclosing information about the billionaire and his businesses.
Kato’s allegations are being examined by federal authorities probing Nicholas’ role in the manipulation of stock options at Broadcom, according to people with knowledge of the investigation. Through his attorney, Nicholas has denied any wrongdoing.
Nicholas, 47, co-founded Broadcom in 1991 and served as its chief executive until 2003. Broadcom’s success made him one of the nation’s richest men, and he has given millions to schools, the Orange County Performing Arts Center and other causes.
The alleged plans for the covert underground hideaway, to be connected to Nicholas’ Laguna Hills home, were detailed by Roman James of Newport Beach, the lead contractor on the project, and six other contractors, engineers and construction workers who worked on it and filed a lawsuit against Nicholas in 2002.
The construction team accused Nicholas of failing to pay millions of dollars for work performed between April 1998 and April 2002. Nicholas was said to have used “manipulation, lies, intimidation and even death threats” to pressure “nearly every contractor and vendor” on the project to perform extra work without pay “at warp speed.”
The allegations were contained in a draft complaint that was prepared but not filed as part of the contractors’ lawsuit, which was resolved in a confidential settlement in 2002.
The draft complaint, however, was attached in 2005 as a supporting document to a lawsuit against the attorney for James, James R. Traut, by another man who sought a larger share of the 2002 settlement.
There was a 2006 judgment in that case, but the outcome was not clear in court documents and attorneys involved in that case could not be reached for comment. Nicholas was not named in that case.
The Times obtained the draft complaint from the Orange County Superior Court file — and blanket denials of its allegations from the Nicholas camp — on Tuesday.
Nicholas attorney Steven A. Silverstein said Tuesday that “all of the allegations are denied” and charged that the similarity between the Roman and Kato cases was not coincidental.
“Basically, where Kenji got his idea for his extortion came from Roman James,” Silverstein said, contending that Kato was familiar with the previous case.
James could not be reached Tuesday. His lawyer, Traut, did not return repeated messages left at his Santa Ana office.
In court filings in his lawsuit, Kato said Nicholas made him oversee supplies of cocaine and other drugs, pay prostitutes from a “petty cash” fund and conceal his boss’ illicit activities.
Quick robin, to the bat cave – I ordered a blond and an asian girl…
Bruce Wayne gone wild (Henry T. Nicholas III)