Wynn Resorts accuses Steve Wynn’s ex-wife of creating sex assault allegations

Nearly two years after casino mogul Steve Wynn left his company amid a torrent of sexual misconduct allegations, Wynn Resorts appears to be trying to clear his name — at least in part.

The company on Friday accused Jorgen Nielsen, a former hairdresser with Wynn Las Vegas, of teaming up with Wynn’s ex-wife Elaine to concoct sexual assault allegations against the casino mogul ahead of his 2018 ouster, court papers show.

The bizarre allegations are based on a November affidavit by Renee Palleggi, who says Nielsen called her in December 2017, while she was “putting up Christmas decorations,” to tell her that Elaine was helping reporters connect with women who claimed to have been assaulted by Wynn.

“I informed Jorgen that the accusations could not be true,” Palleggi says in the affidavit. “I have known Steve for many years and never witnessed any inappropriate behavior by him.

Steve WynnAP

“Jorgen told me that I should say that Steve raped me and that I gave birth to my son as a result,” Palleggi continued.

“Jorgen suggested that Elaine would be willing to pay me a six-figure amount if I would say that Steve raped me. He said there was a ‘huge’ amount of money at stake and that I needed to be on the ‘winning team’ and not the ‘wynning team’.”

The startling affidavit was whipped out as part of a motion to dismiss a lawsuit Nielsen filed last month in Nevada county court against Wynn Resorts, its CEO Matthew Maddox and two other Wynn executives who have since left the company. It says Palleggi has known Nielsen since their days working together at the Bellagio Hotel & Casino in 2000.

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Nielsen sued Wynn Resorts and the executives — but not Steve Wynn himself — for mounting an “undercover sting operation” against him in retaliation for contributing to the January 2018 Wall Street Journal report that led to Wynn .

Wynn has long denied the assault allegations and has blamed the scandal that ended his career . But the company has also made multiple settlements to the women, including a $7.5 million settlement in 2005 for a former manicurist at the casino company who said Wynn forced her to have sex with him.

Earlier this year, Massachusetts gaming regulators found that Wynn executives ran a longstanding, sophisticated cover-up to protect Wynn from sexual misconduct allegations by employees.

They fined the company $35 million, but let it keep its gaming license.

Nielsen’s lawyer, Kathleen England, said she hadn’t read the motion to dismiss but was “fairly confident we’ll be opposing it.”

Elaine Wynn could not be reached for comment.

Steve Wynn filed a defamation suit against Nielsen in April 2018 for his comments in the WSJ article.

“Everybody was petrified,” Nielsen told WSJ of the salon staff’s response to Wynn seeking an appointment. Wynn’s sexual advances on staffers were causing a problem, but “nobody was there to help us,” Nielsen said.

Wynn resigned as chairman and CEO of Wynn Resorts in February 2018 — a month after the WSJ article appeared — shortly before filing his defamation suit against Nielsen.

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