'Memphis Mafia' Owners Threaten Suit

Wednesday, August 16th 2000, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — Five former members of Elvis Presley's inner circle have incorporated the name ``Memphis Mafia'' and are prepared to sue anyone who uses it without permission.

Presley had an entourage of pals and employees who ranged in number from a dozen to about 30. A Las Vegas reporter dubbed the group the Memphis Mafia in 1960 after they cruised the city in black mohair suits and dark sunglasses.

``The Memphis Mafia name is known by millions of fans throughout the world, OK?'' said Marty Lacker, who owns the name along with Lamar Fike, Red West, Sonny West, Presley cousin Billy and New York entertainment entrepreneur George Tan. They incorporated the name in the early 1990s.

George Klein, who knew Elvis back in high school, has held a Memphis Mafia Reunion for the past nine years. A get-together Sunday at a club featured Presley band members Scotty Moore and D.J. Fontana.

When told that Klein's event was billed as a Memphis Mafia reunion, Tan said: ``If he uses it, he will get sued — bottom line.''