A financially strapped Queens synagogue is suing a catering company it says has been playing host to late-night, Latin-themed fiestas for at least a year without the temple’s blessing in an effort to raise extra cash to pay off debts, the center’s lawyer said.
“They were running it like a disco or a night club,” said attorney Gary Rose, who filed a lawsuit against Crown Royale caterers in State Supreme Court. “This is an Orthodox Jewish synagogue. It’s sacrilegious.”
The law suit alleges that Crown Royale – which works with the Rockwood Park Jewish Center in Howard Beach to stage traditional Jewish functions – has not paid rent for two years and let outside event promoters rent the space to throw salsa and reggaeton parties that they advertised with photos of scantily clad women and where they served alcohol without a license.
“It’s put such a bad name on the Jewish Center,” Rosen said. “They were probably looking to make some extra cash.”
But one of Crown Royale’s owners said the synagogue’s leaders agreed that the parties were necessary for the Jewish center’s survival after it suffered financial losses from damage due to Hurricane Sandy.