Welfare recipients have allegedly been gambling on another person’s dollar in Florida by making use of EBT cards at underground gaming facilities.
Welfare recipients in Tallahassee, Florida, have purportedly been utilizing their electronic benefit transfer (EBT) cards to buy, among other things, alcohol and tobacco, as well as used the funds to gamble.
A multi-agency investigation led by the Leon County Sheriff’s Office in Tallahassee has identified 132 suspects tangled up in a unlawful gambling and fraud scheme. Four local residents in Leon County have now been arrested on charges of racketeering, money laundering, welfare card fraud, and unlawful gambling.
Leon County Sheriff Mike Wood states the operation netted the ringleaders a huge selection of 1000s of dollars in ill-gotten gains.
Wondwossen Gizaw-Tessema, 57, Eyerusalem Hiluf, 31, Firehiwot Gebre, 35, and Christabel Ekhosuehi, 29, were apprehended by Leon County, utilizing the first three accused of being the ringleaders of the enterprise that is multi-venue.
According up to a pr release, the Wondu Marathon Convenience Store, Euro Fashions Boutique, One Stop university Market, Pretty Game Boutique, and Belen Mart businesses were all used as gambling enterprises and EBT exchange centers.
Down with EBT
Law enforcement believes Gizaw-Tessema was the boss of this operation, as he owns several of the continuing organizations included in the band. Leon County described the illegal gambling machines as being similar to slots, in that players simply deposited cash, hit a button, and won or lost.
An overall total of 24 devices were apprehended from the Sheriff’s Office raids that occurred in after obtaining search warrants july.
Issued by the Florida Department of Children and Families, EBT cards cannot be used to buy alcoholic beverages, nor can the funds be spent in bars, liquor stores, adult entertainment venues, or pari-mutuel or gambling facilities.
Gizaw-Tessema created a nifty solution to the EBT regulations by providing money in exchange for typical important household supplies. He allegedly provided Costco and Sam’s Club shopping lists to EBT cardholders, and when the welfare recipients returned with the items, they were paid by him 50 cents on the dollar for the goods.
With cash in hand, many ‘customers’ are suspected of trying to recoup their losses on Gizaw-Tessema’s video gaming devices.
Detectives estimate the EBT operation taken in upwards of $1,000 a day. January Financial records show Gizaw-Tessema deposited a total of $1.4 million to four bank accounts dating back to.
The story out of Tallahassee is undoubtedly not the time that is first monies have been used to gamble.
A 2010 review in Ca revealed that $1.8 million in welfare funds were spent at gambling enterprises. Plus in Seattle, a news that is local investigation in 2013 unearthed that $2 million of EBT money was gambled with at Washington casinos.
Congress encouraged states in 2012 welfare that is issuing to ‘maintain policies and practices’ that prevent wasteful spending by recipients in ‘any liquor store, any casino, gambling casino, or video gaming establishment.’ However, the federal legislation doesn’t explicitly mandate that states follow the rules.
Most state lawmakers have obliged.
Only two states, Minnesota and Texas, don’t have any regulations preventing EBT money from used for gambling. Minnesota does ban EBT cards from alcohol and tobacco purchases, while Texas doesn’t have regulations on what one’s welfare cash is spent.
US Open Match-Fixing Scandal Once Again Plagues Tennis
The usa Open match-fixing scandal in ny has once again place the sport front and center in the media, with critics calling the sport’s integrity into question.
Irregular wagering patterns on Vitalia Diatchenko (in yellow) and Timea Bacsinszky’s first-round US Open match have returned tennis match-fixing to the headlines. (Image: Alex Goodlett/Getty Pictures)
On August 30, 15th-ranked Timea Bacsinszky of Switzerland beat Russia’s Vitalia Diatchenko in straight sets. But after having a 6-1, 6-1 match, tennis’ governing body was asked to probe the contest.
The Tennis Integrity device (TIU), formed in 2008 by the tennis that is leading across the world, is investigating whether incorrect agreements were made prior to Bacsinszky and Diatchenko’s match.
Russian online bookmaker Fonbet was reportedly the first to ever alert tennis over suspicious gambling patterns. Bet365 filed similar grievances and said it absolutely was forced to suspend betting in the match.
‘ As with every cases, the TIU will assess, produce a judgment and take appropriate action on the alert information received and obtained for the first round singles match between Vitalia Diatchenko and Timea Bacsinszky played at the US Open,’ the TIU said in a declaration. ‘ Every alert received is assessed and followed up as an indicator that something inappropriate may have occurred. dolphin treasure slots youtube It really is important to understand that an alert on its own is not proof of match-fixing.’
Integrity Unit Win
Corruption has unfortunately beleaguered the sport of tennis for years, however the 2016 US start match-fixing scandal could have long-term good impact. That’s because the match in question appears to go against all traditional match-fixing wisdom.
As opposed to an unranked or opponent that is lower-seeded off an upset at insurmountable odds, Bacsinszky, the 16th-ranked player in the world, did exactly what she had been likely to do. Bacsinszky won is sets that are straight but regardless, the betting houses detected irregularities.
Bacsinszky won a silver medal in doubles at the 2016 Olympics in Rio, while Diatchenko is ranked 677th worldwide.
Bacsinszky was a -425 favorite at Bovada, meaning one would have to bet $425 to win $100. But in tennis, as could be the case with specific other recreations, in-play wagering has grown in popularity overseas.
Numerous part bets are offered on tennis including set scores, total matches in a game, very first to win a collection, total sets, and more.
Many believe tennis match-fixing corruption mainly occurs during lower-level matches where much less numerous eyes are watching. However, fewer bets may also be typically put on non-marquee games, making it that more challenging to conceal fraudulent activity.
Sports Betting Appreciate
The TIU has had a busy 2016. In the quarter that is first, the agency had been notified 48 times over suspicious wagering patterns.
The most tennis that is notable to be engulfed in sports betting is current number 1 Novak Djokovic. In 2007, the 12-time Grand Slam winner said he was approached by a bookie and offered $200,000 to lose a match that is first-round.
At the Australian Open, betting had been suspended on a blended doubles match, but the TIU later stated it found no evidence of match-fixing.
A 2007 game between Martin Arguello and Nikolay Davydenko brought tennis match-fixing to your limelight. Arguello, rated 87th worldwide at the time, won the match whenever Davydenko that is fourth-ranked withdrew an injury.
Alleged Mob Kingpin Joey Merlino Banned from All Pennsylvania Casinos
Ba-da-bing! Joey ‘Skinny Joey’ Merlino banned from Pennsylvania’s 12 casino hotspots. (Image: Miami Herald)
Joey Merlino, the man who the FBI believes to be the mind of the Philadelphia Mob, is prohibited from entering the state’s 12 casinos. The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) voted unanimously this week to designate ‘Skinny Joey’ persona non grata, after an altercation at the Sugarhouse Casino in March.
That, and the fact that he was arrested in very early August along with 46 mob that is alleged, soldiers and capos, and accused to be one of many ringleaders of an unlawful empire known as the East Coast La Cosa Nostra Enterprise.
Skinny Joey and their associates have already been charged, variously, with illegal gambling, extortion, gun-running, fraud, good racketeering that is old-fashioned along with other crimes. He could be currently out on $5 million bail as he awaits trial.
The PGCB stated that it began its investigation following an incident at the Sugarhouse blackjack tables when Merlino and his entourage fell into a disagreement with some other players.
Based on documents seen by Fox Information, things got heated and several punches were thrown before protection broke up the fight. Merlino reportedly then shook hands with one of the group that is opposing left.
When he returned towards the same casino the following month, he was met by PGCB agents whom attempted to serve him with an exclusion order, but he brushed them off and walked away.
Agents again attempted to serve him your order when he appeared at Harrahs Casino in Chester, and were again waved away by the reputed gangster.
‘We attempted to serve him at their restaurant, his house, at Harrah’s, at SugarHouse,’ stated board spokesman Doug Harbach. ‘It’s a permanent ban unless he petitions the board to be removed and provides the board with ample reason why he should be taken out of the list.’
The arrests month that is last as the result of a joint research involving the FBI and nyc’s arranged crime task force and is thought to have spanned a long period and involved infiltration by an undercover FBI agent into the ranks associated with the company.
Investigators say they have collected 1000s of hours of testimonies gathered through wiretaps and the cooperation of a witness. The indictment that is 32-page last month details incidents of assaults, threats and arson.
Merlino has beaten murder costs into the past, but has served prison time for racketeering. He had been barred from all Atlantic City gambling enterprises.
Quebec Regulator Accuses Ex-Amaya Chief David Baazov of Taking Kickbacks
It is been a year that is rough David Baazov. The former boy that is golden chief executive officer of Canada’s Amaya Inc., ended up being charged by Quebec’s monetary regulatory arm, the AMF, of insider trading. He first took a temporary leave, and then finally stepped down, from his executive duties at the gaming company although he has denied all the charges vehemently.
David Baazov denies the charges that he profited from a sophisticated insider trading scheme by getting 10 % kickbacks for leaking information that is privileged. (Image: YouTube.com)
But now, a new bombshell has been lobbied at the ex-leader: that of taking kickbacks in exchange for information, as reported by the AMF. According to court papers filed by the regulator, Baazov was the head of an insider trading ‘pyramid’ and took kickbacks for leaking privileged information to a ‘sophisticated network.’
The network, the AMF contends, contains his brother, some company acquaintances, and other friends and family members.
Baazov engineered one the absolute most audacious takeovers in gambling history, the $4.9 billion acquisition of PokerStars by Amaya. But he formally resigned final month as CEO and chairman of the company he transformed into one of the greatest online gambling players in the world.
Now he faces new allegations, presented this week in documents, which are the result of an investigation that is continued the AMF over the spring and summer. The regulator alleges that Baazov had been the main source of leaked information that had been disseminated through his sibling, Josh Baazov, and their associate, Craig Levett, A amaya that is former consultant.
Ten Percentage Kickbacks
It also alleges why these three took kickbacks due to their services, typically amounting to ten percent of most profits gained, and that included ‘luxury items’ presented as gifts, including a Rolex watch worth $13,000. The AMF alleges that the terms had been ‘negotiated before the offenses,’ and that the group showed a ‘high level of company and sophistication’ in its operations.
The regulator says the group, consisting of 13 people, made around $1.5 million in benefit from trading stocks just before at least six takeover deals, going back to Amaya’s purchase of Cryptologic in 2010.
Amaya has had a ambitious m&a strategy over the past six years, acquiring Chartwell, Ongame, Cadillac Jack, and Diamond Game Enterprises, in addition to Cryptologic therefore the Oldford Group, which owned PokerStars. Two acquisitions under scrutiny were unrelated to Amaya: Scientific Games’ purchase of WMS and Intertain’s acquisition Gamesys’ major assets.
In line with the AMF, members associated with group were still attempting to benefit from Baazov’s bid to obtain Amaya and take it personal, a move that was announced in this year, long after the AMF investigation had been launched january.
‘Mr. Baazov has been categorical: he failed to receive any such thing,’ their spokesman Ian Robertson told the Financial Post via email. ‘As Mr. Baazov has previously stated, he is innocent of any wrongdoing and desperate to present his defense,’ Robertson added.
On Wednesday, Baazov’s lawyer formerly filed a notice contesting the brand new allegations. While retired CEO has resigned permanently from their executive positions within the business, he continues to be its majority shareholder.