BEL AIR, LOS ANGELES -- Neighbor Joe Horacek compares the building to the Starship Enterprise. It stands seven stories tall and spans more than 30,000 square feet. It even has a 70-seat IMAX theater inside.
No, it's not a mall. It's not even a commercial property.
It's a gigantic mansion built by real estate mogul Mohamed Hadid, of "The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills" fame. To the horror of his neighbors and the ire of city building officials, Hadid has constructed a massive home in Bel-Air violating numerous city codes.
"He starts the work, and if he gets caught, then he asks for forgiveness and suggests that he'll make corrections and that it's all been an accident," Horacek said.
The Los Angeles Department of Building and Safety alleges Hadid's home is zoned for 36 feet tall, but it stands at about 70 feet tall. Although the home was approved to be 20,000 square feet, Hadid just kept building, eventually adding about 10,000 to 15,000 square feet more, building and safety officials said.
Hadid even tried to cover up his violations with plants and tarps over the top of the building, officials said.
Neighbor Horacek, who works as an attorney, has been gathering evidence. He wants the structure to come down and the hillside restored.
Hadid appealed this week for a 60-day extension to comply with the permits, but was denied.
In the meantime, the Department of Building and Safety is in the process of turning the case over to the city attorney, who could then criminally prosecute Hadid for failing to comply with city orders and building without permits.
The misdemeanor charges could result in jail time if he doesn't show progress soon.
Hadid did not return calls for comment.
Bel-Air monster mansion nightmare for neighbors, city