Former Oak Park nightclub owner charged with arson, fraud

Frank Elliot made his first appearance in bond court, facing three felony counts, two for arson and another for insurance fraud.

The 26-year-old is accused of setting fire to his former Oak Park nightclub, The Velvet Rope, in June of last year.  He said at the time that anti-gay slurs were written on the wall and that he suspected a hate crime.

In court today, the Cook County state’s attorney said Elliot set the fire to collect more than $100,000 in insurance money.  Business at the club was slow and he was set to open a new business, The Bonsai Bar, in Chicago’s Boystown neighborhood.

His attorney today said it just doesn’t add up.  His client, he says has cooperated with the investigation.

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