A legal maneuver has blocked, at least temporarily, the City of Providence’s attempt to wipe out business permits for the Shark Bar and Grille.
The city targeted the Thayer Street establishment because of bribes paid to former House Speaker Gordon Fox.
The Superior Court has appointed a receiver for the bar, following a request from the bar’s owners.
The move means the judge is in control of the bar for now, and the city License Board can’t go after the permits.
Speaking to reporters on Monday, Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza said the city would ask the judge to undo the receivership, and allow the city to move forward with efforts to void the licenses.
"If they obtained the license through corruption and fraud, they don't deserve to have it, and the city is going to take every step possible to void the license," Elorza said. "It sends a clear message that corruption at any level of government is not going to be tolerated."
Former House Speaker Gordon Fox has acknowledged accepting $52,500 in bribes to push forward the Shark Bar's application for a liquor license in 2008. The bar’s owners have not been charged in connection with the case.