Penthouse Dancer Leslie Liwanag’s Lawsuit: I Had to Pay Jiggle Joint to Perform There!

New York Daily News - Alison Gendar
February 12, 2010

A Penthouse dancer claims the famous jiggle joint cheats its performers out of wages, withholds tips and even charges them for the privilege of working there, according to a lawsuit filed Thursday in Manhattan federal court.

Leslie Liwanag claims the club takes a 20% slice out of dancers’ tips, makes them buy their own costumes, cheats them out of overtime and makes them pay a fee to perform, according to the lawsuit filed by lawyers Justin M. Swartz and Sonia R. Lin, of Outten & Golden LLP, and Gratienne (Sienna) Baskin, of the Sex Workers Project at the Urban Justice Center.

“The Penthouse Executive Club calls its dancers, the ‘most splendid Entertainers from around the world.’ If the club appreciates their hard work, it should follow the law and pay its entertainers properly,” Swartz said.

“After all, they are the workers that provide the club’s customers with the ‘customer service,’ ‘environment of sophistication,’ and ‘pleasurable diversions’ about which the Penthouse Executive Club boasts.”

The lawsuit comes on the heels of allegations filed by a Penthouse cocktail waitress, who claimed she was sexually harassed by male and female employees, as well as cheated out of tips.