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Lapdancer kidnappers 'is a fantasy' court hears
2:49pm Tuesday 28th January 2014 in News
A CLAIM by a nightclub boss that he was kidnapped by Hampshire lapdancers is nothing more than a ''fantasy'', a jury has been told.
Curtis Woodman, 34, claims he was bundled into a BMW, beaten up and forced to transfer £4,800 into a bank account during a ''terrifying'' two-hour ordeal.
Mr Woodman had refused to pay the women and their manager more than £42,000 for work carried out at his pop-up nightclub during the Cheltenham Festival in March 2012.
The businessman claims the women are not entitled to the money as they ''insisted'' on stripping off despite agreeing to wear nipple tassels and bikinis at all times.
Bristol Crown Court heard £42,000 of the disputed cash related to one customer, named only as Steve, who spent six hours with lapdancers in the Embassy Club.
In a closing speech on behalf of manager Charlotte Devaney, 34, Garry Green pointed out Mr Woodman had only paid the women £4,800 during the incident, on September 3 2012.
''Steve has been reading the coverage and he is not a happy man,'' Mr Green said.
''He's saying '£5,000 for being kidnapped by four girls? I paid over £40,000 to listen to 'if you think I'm sexy and you want my body come on sugar tell me so' and other badly sung Rod Stewart renditions'.
''For Steve and for many other men, the idea of being kidnapped by lapdancers is pure fantasy and their idea of heaven.
''The Crown's case is a fantasy.”
The jury previously heard the pop-up nightclub in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, was closed on its third night by authorities due to breaching its licence.
Officers stormed the premises and shut it down - with Mr Woodman and Mr Jouni quickly ''vanishing'', the court was told.
Charlotte Devaney, from London, who recruited around 60 women to work at the club, said 19 were left unpaid.
She spent months chasing Mr Woodman for payment before deciding to go and meet him on September 3 2012 to demand answers.
Devaney, along with lapdancers Mandy Cool, 29, Stephanie Pye, 31, and Rachel Goodchild, 24 - dressed in miniskirts, Daisy Duke shorts and heels - drove to meet Mr Woodman at his work in Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire, with two brothers, Robert, 27, and Alexander Morris, 23.
Mr Woodman claims that after the group arrived at his work at around 4pm, he was bundled into a car and threatened with a Stanley knife.
He insists he was then driven around Cheltenham for two hours by Devaney in her BMW 1 Series before being allowed to leave.
He alleges that Robert Morris kicked and punched his face, while Alex Morris threatened him with a knife.
Mr Woodman told the jury he was robbed of £60, his £4,650 Breitling watch and forced to transfer £4,800 to Devaney.
But Mr Green said these ''lies'' were all part of Mr Woodman's efforts to avoid paying the women the £42,000 they were owed.
Alexander Morris, from Southampton, has admitted carrying a bladed article, namely a Stanley knife, on September 3 2012, the day of the alleged kidnap.
He denies robbery, along with Robert Morris, also from Southampton, concerning Mr Woodman's watch.
The brothers are also charged with robbery, concerning £60 Mr Woodman gave them from his pocket before his release. They deny the charge.
Devaney, from London; Pye, from Sutton Coldfield; Cool, of Southampton; and Goodchild, of Southampton, each deny a charge of kidnap.
The trial continues.