Former Oak Park nightclub owner charged with arson, fraud

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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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