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LA Exotique Faces Eviction, Nick Manning Cries Censorship

LA Exotique Faces Eviction, Nick Manning Cries Censorship
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XBIZ London - Sept. 15-18
Oct 23, 2007 5:30 PM PST    Text size: 
ENCINO, Calif. — Recently opened lingerie store LA Exotique, owned in part by adult performer Nick Manning, reportedly is under attack by the storefront's landlord and at least one of his other tenants.

Manning told XBIZ that he is being sued for eviction by his landlord, Ventura-Louise Partners, and has 20 days left of the given 45 until his store is closed up. He did not specify further on what grounds he is being evicted.

"I'm reaching out to anybody who cares about this issue that can actually do something about it," Manning said. "Unless there's some sort of emergency stay of eviction, my store will be closed in 20 days."

LA Exotique General Manager Dean Sussman told XBIZ that the issue may be premature and is waiting to discuss the issue with his lawyer Douglas Gray on Thursday.

Manning said that Sussman worked closely with the city to be sure the store was zoned properly as a lingerie store — the store is not considered adult because of the small amount of adult products in stock — and that this whole ordeal is simply a censorship issue.

"Their issue is because I'm an adult star," Manning said. "We have diligently adhered to the guidelines provided to us by the zoning board. Now the landlord wants to evict us and keep the [$90,000] advance rent merely because the store is owned by adult stars."

A representative from Ventura-Louise Partners was unavailable for comment at press time.

Manning said the landlord also has delayed the completion of LA Exotique's sign by asking the manufacturer to hold its production. Manning said the sign-maker called him and let him know.

"It's obvious that they are just making life difficult because I'm an adult film star," Manning said. "Someone that cares about censorship really needs to call me and take this issue for me, and if not, then the whole adult industry will be under attack."

Sussman has hired Gray, a local lawyer, to represent the store, but Manning said he isn't optimistic.

"They're suing us, we're suing them and I tell you, we're going lose," Manning said. "We're a small boutique. We don't have the power to fight these things. If somebody wants to fight censorship, it has to be a combined effort."

Manning said the store is co-owned by adult stars Michelle McLaren, Rachel Roxxx, Sarah Jesse, Mike Butders and Justin Syder, and the landlord problems have negatively affected them all.

Manning said he will appear on "The Howard Stern Show" on Sirius Radio Thursday to discuss the issue and help spread the word.

LA Exotique is located at 17257 Ventura Blvd.

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