The newest Real Housewives of Orange County star, Peggy Sulahian, has been in the homophobic hot seat, after reports surfaced alleging that she banned her brother from their father’s funeral, because he’s gay. “Pol’” claims that Peggy shut him out of her life because of his sexual orientation — but it looks like there might be more to her “heartbroken” bro than meets the eye.
In January 2017, criminal charges were filed against Pol’ Atteu, aka Paul Atteukenian, 51 and his partner, Patrick Arnold Simpson, 48, owners of Network International Models & Talent. The duo is accused of unlawfully charging the parents of an underage child for photos and fees.
“The promise of Hollywood has lured thousands of people from around the globe to pursue careers in television and movies,” Los Angeles City Attorney, Mike Feuer said last January. “Unfortunately, that promise also attracts unscrupulous individuals who would take advantage of those hopes and dreams. My office will hold accountable those who prey on aspiring performers to the full extent of the law.”
Atteukenian, Simpson, and their unlicensed agency were charged with seven criminal counts. The partners are accused of violating the Krekorian Act (advance fees for talent services); operating without a “Child Performer Service Permit,” and falsely claiming that the business was a licensed talent agency. Petty theft, attempted grand theft and criminal conspiracy, round out the lengthy list of charges.
City Council member, Paul Krekorian, author of California’s Talent Scam Prevention Act, said that he was happy that Feuer was “boldly enforcing” the law as he intended.
“When I wrote this law eight years ago, I wanted to create a tool to protect budding performers from being exploited by seasoned scammers,” Krekorian said. “This prosecution should put all dubious talent businesses on notice that, if they break the law in Los Angeles, they will face the consequences.”
Atteukenian and Simpson could face up to four years behind bars, and $33,500 in fines.
Allegedly, the agency signed a deal to represent a teen girl last April, despite the fact that their license was four months past it’s expiration date — then failed to secure a “Child Performer Service Permit.” The mother was supposedly charged $744 for photos and photo related services, then was informed that she needed to cough up another $8,245, so her daughter could attend the agency’s convention.
It’s illegal for any talent agency to charge a represented artist advance fees, or require that the client purchase photographs, lessons, or participate in seminars as a condition of that representation.
It looks like ol’ Pol’ is in his own hot water — could Peggy be protecting her family from a shady scammer?
Watch The Real Housewives of Orange County, Monday nights, on Bravo.
Becca is a Senior Editor for All About The Tea. She’s a coastal girl who loves the outdoors, and writing about the sneaky and silly side of reality TV. Her bio is short, but her snark is endless. She loves writing for the sharpest posters in the world.