The owner of a failed downtown restaurant has been ordered to pay more than $434,000 to his former landlord.
Lancaster County District Court Judge Andrew Jacobsen last week entered a default judgment of $434,422.79 against Efthymios "Mike" Gelastopoulos, who owned Flapjacks American Diner at 230 N. 12th St.
The restaurant, which served breakfast and lunch, opened Dec. 18 and closed about three months later. The space in the former Spaghetti Works building had previously been home to Dempsey's Burger Pub. It remains vacant.
The building's owner, Glenbrook LLC, filed a lawsuit against Gelastopoulos on March 16 alleging he had not paid any rent, common area charges or the restaurant's electric bill.
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The lawsuit originally only sought the rent and other charges that were past due, but it was later amended to include all rent and maintenance charges due for the full term of the lease.
Gelastopoulos, who moved to Nebraska from Florida last year, told the Journal Star in January that he targeted downtown Lincoln because of its proximity to the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and state offices. He said he had originally planned to open a Mad Mike's Burgers & Fries, a franchise he founded, but changed course when he learned downtown Lincoln didn't have a non-chain diner.