LAS VEGAS (CN) - A powerful Nevada lobbyist whose formers business partners last week accused him of embezzling "tens of millions of dollars," struck back with a $180 million federal lawsuit accusing them of threatening to kill him and his family.
F. Harvey Whittemore and his wife, Annette, were suedlast week in Clark County Court by Wingfield Nevada Group Holding Co., which claimed that the lobbyist, developer, businessman and lawyer embezzled money to bankroll his lavish lifestyle.
The Whittemores fired back this week against Thomas A. Seeno, Albert Seeno Jr. and Albert Seeno III, who, as heads of Wingfield Nevada Group, have a combined net worth of up to $2 billion, according to Whittemore's complaint.
The company owns several casinos and large, master-planned developments in Nevada, as well as "oil and gas companies, bottling and beverage companies, dairies, realty companies and nurseries," Whittemore's complaint states.
In their complaint, the Whittemores claim that Albert Seeno Jr. and his son, Albert Seeno III, "are associated with organized crime networks, have associated with and are associating with known felons and are currently, along with the Doe defendants, under investigation by the FBI and IRS, and were raided by agents of the FBI, IRS, and the Secret Service."
Whittemore claims that after buying in to his Wingfield venture, Albert Seeno Jr., became "disgruntled about his investment" and started "falsely accusing Harvey Whittemore of embezzlement, fraud and other criminal activity."
The complaint continues: "Albert Seeno Jr. threatened to go to the FBI with information that he alleged he had regarding these alleged improprieties; that he would personally bring down every member of the political 'machine' in Nevada including references to U.S. Senators; that in the course of this threat asked whether Mr. Whittemore believed in God; whether Mr. Whittemore went to church; that Mr. Whittemore should gather his flock on Sunday and pray. Albert Seeno Jr. threatened that when he was through with Mr. Whittemore he would be disbarred and behind bars; that they would spend Mr. Whittemore into the ground and there was no way he had the finances to defend himself; that the Whittemores would have no friends left in Reno or Nevada; that he would bring down any business or friend associated with Mr. Whittemore; and that at Mr. Whittemore's funeral there would not be one person in attendance.
"At the conclusion of these threats, he reminded Mr. Whittemore of the threats he had made about murdering his own brother, Thomas Seeno, with his own bare hands and then threatened Mr. Whittemore's life and the lives of his entire family if he did not do as he was expressly instructed by Albert Seeno, Jr. These threats occurred in meetings in Reno, Nevada at the Peppermill Hotel and Casino in August 2010."
Continuing in this vein, the complaint adds that Albert Seeno III "instructed an employee ... to call Mr. Whittemore and tell him that, if the Seenos didn't get their money from an entity called BrightSource Energy, that he (Albert Seeno III) was going to personally fly to Reno and 'break Harvey's fucking legs.'"
Whittemore says he "reported these threats to police authorities."