N.D. AG not a fan of the circus

By Nick Rees | May 26, 2010


BISMARCK, N.D. (Legal Newsline) - North Dakota Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem has issued a cease-and-desist order that bans a Texas-based circus from promoting or conducting entertainment in North Dakota.

American United Entertainment LLC, of Gainesville, Tex., also known as Great American Circus of the Stars, held circus performances in Park River, N.D., and Grafton, N.D., in June and July 2009. The company promised that a percentage of the ticket sales would be shared with the communities but failed to do so, Stenehjem said.

"It's extremely disappointing that after Park River and Grafton welcomed the circus and its performers to their communities with typical North Dakota hospitality, the circus took advantage of this trust and stiffed them," Stenehjem said.

"In one instance, the circus slipped out of town in the middle of the night without paying the agreed ticket proceeds."

The state's Consumer Protection Division conducted an investigation into American United Entertainment, making repeated contact with Jessica Jani and Carol King, also known as Judy J. Kaye and Carrell J. Kaye, the company's entities and principals, as well as their agents, to obtain payment of the promised proceeds and to resolve the matter without legal action.

All entities were uncooperative in resolving the complaint, Stenehjem's office said

The conduct of these entities, Stenehjem said, dictates that communities show caution in engaging such transient outfits.

"Our communities may have to consider taking steps to guarantee payment by requiring similar entities to make advance deposits or ensure the payment due by some other method. Nonetheless, we will hold such entities accountable for their agreements," Stenehjem said.

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