Controversial Strip Club chain Cocomo just can't stop making headlines. If it isn't their pink umbrella promo girls harassing potential customers in the street, it's astronomic bills reminiscent of the The Wolf of Wall Street. The company's time could be up however, provided a Police investigation into alleged drink spiking leads to a guilty verdict in the courts.
Cocomo's strip club empire now spans 30 locations across Poland, and their owner, Jan Szybawski, is clearly making a mint on the business. A former Wisła Krakow hooligan, Szybawski now cruises around in a shiny Ferrari and arrogantly remarked in an interview with TVN yesterday that he is "only afraid of God".
If the allegations surrounding the astronomic Cocomo bills turn out to be true however, Szybawski may well have more reasons to be fearful. Recently many of Cocomo's clients have claimed they had no recollection of how they spent so much cash on one visit. Despite not being the first men to leave a strip club with an empty wallet, the claims were of a sufficient number to spark a Police enquiry.
The investigation intends to find out whether staff members used drugs such as Rohypnol to spike customers' drinks. After reporting what happened to the police, Cocomo's clients supplied blood and urine samples to determine if they had consumed any drugs other than alcohol. According to reports in this morning's Gazeta Wyborcza, analysis of the samples confirmed that some of the clients had been under the influence of narcotics.
Yesterday morning Police searched Cocomo's Poznan branch, which like here in Wrocław, is also located on the main square. Similar operations were carried out in Warsaw and Krakow too, with a total of 5 arrests made by lunchtime. Documents were seized, but no drugs were found on the premises.
A breakthrough came later on however, when one of Cocomo's employees visited the police station to give a statement. The same person also told Gazeta Wyborcza that once it was known the company director had a company credit card with no limit, a plan was hatched to rob him of an enormous amount of cash. Cocomo HQ first ordered the staff to not let the client leave until he'd spent half a million, but then decided to extend that sum to a whole million.
In another report published by state broadcaster TVP yesterday, a former Cocomo employee revealed that 64 bottles of the club's most expensive champagne (costing 15,000zl) would need to be purchased to reach a bill of a million zl. One would certainly have to question whether the club would have that many in stock – but it appears they don't actually need to. The ex-Cocomo employee also told TVP that they often just use cheap fizzy pop from Biedronka, as most of the guests are not sober enough to notice the difference.
According to the aforementioned TVP report, Cocomo's dancers get 50% commission on drinks, giving them every motivation to get their clients back to the bar time and time again. Cocomo themselves boast how much their girls can earn, stating on their recruitment adverts that dancers can rake in as much as 10,000zl per month.
In an interview broadcast on TVN yesterday, Jan Szybawski defended his business, stating: "Everywhere we monitor and train our employees – you can't steal from the client. We have some who checks for all such situations to ensure nothing wrong happens."
Meanwhile here in Wrocław, there have been no reports of any wrong doing at Cocomo's branch on the Rynek.