LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — A local mother fends off her former landlord’s attempt to delay justice in a bizarre sex-for-rent case.
The plaintiff in this sex contract case involving a local property manager asks that his federal civil lawsuit be allowed to continue.
It was suspended for weeks after the owner filed for bankruptcy at the last minute as the case was set to resume after a previous hiatus.
The plaintiff’s attorneys are asking the court to lift the automatic stay imposed by the bankruptcy filing and complete the investigation of the case.
Plaintiff Candy Torres is suing former real estate broker and property manager Allan Rothstein for violation of federal fair housing law, wrongful eviction, sexual harassment and deceptive marketing practices.
In her federal lawsuit, Torres accuses Rothstein of forcing her to sign a sex contract in order to stay in the rental house he had previously allowed her to move into with her five children.
Court records indicate that in 2018, Torres and her children were homeless and looking for a landlord who would accept a Section 8 housing voucher.
Rothstein agreed, but allegedly demanded that Torres pay illegal rental fees and charges.
Court records indicate that Rothstein breached her agreement to reduce Torres’ security deposit in exchange for the work she did to clean, paint and wallpaper the home.
Then the records say, “When Torres was most vulnerable, Rothstein demanded sex from Torres.”
When she refused, he asked her to “sign a sex contract…or lose her place”.
“It’s direct consent for sexual intercourse and/or (oral sex), which is in italics. Who names the document that?” wondered attorney Bruce Flammey, a housing law expert who we asked to analyze the file for us in August.
“And that’s when I started to laugh,” Flammey said, “because it’s a legal contract in that the actors of Grey’s Anatomy are real doctors. It’s literally not worth the paper on which it is printed.”
In court records, Torres says she signed the document, believing it to be illegal and unenforceable, and never acted on it.
“How do we feel about her initialing this thing?” Darcy Spears asked.
“Nothing,” Flammey said. “People sign things all the time, and the popular myth is, well, you signed it, so it’s binding. There are a variety of things you can sign that aren’t binding. Any contract which is contrary to law or public order is not mandatory.”
Rothstein, who is in his 80s, said he had cognitive problems and was in emotional pain because of death threats he received following media reports of the trial.
Judge Gordon had reset the case for the final two days of trial from Monday. On October 3, but Sunday, October 2 at 10 p.m., Rothstein filed for bankruptcy, which automatically put everything on hold.
Court records show that Rothstein was previously disciplined and fined for misconduct by a district court judge for delaying the trial for several months during the discovery phase.
Records show Rothstein never paid the nearly $4,700 fine that was supposed to help Torres recoup some of his legal costs created by Rothstein’s delay tactics.
In emails attached to the automatic stay waiver motion, Rothstein’s attorney first states that his client is bankrupt, doesn’t have a lot of money, and has a lot of debt.
But in the next sentence, he says Rothstein is eager to settle the case, which would likely involve a substantial payment.
A hearing on the motion is scheduled for November 23.