A brief look at crime 12/7 – 12/13

Teen shot dead at gambling den, cousin wounded

A teenager was killed and his cousin wounded when gunmen opened fire with what is believed to be a semi-automatic weapon at an illegal gambling den at Mt St George, near Scarborough, at about midnight on Monday. Dead is 18-year-old Jude “Stooky” Alleyne, of Mt St George, who succumbed to his injuries shortly afterwards at the Scarborough Hospital.

Southport mum speaks after suicide of her successful banker son

THE shell-shocked mother of a high-flying banker who hung himself after being sucked into the dangerous world of gambling, debt and drugs has spoken out to say: “Don’t let this happen to your child”.  Tragic James Paget, 28, killed himself after racking up £60,000 worth of credit card bills and loan charges to fund a secret gambling habit and cocaine addiction that not even his girlfriend or family knew about.

Stunned mum Barbara, of Ainsdale, thought her intelligent son – a senior banking manager at Lloyds TSB – had long overcome a university addiction that saw him spend thousands on internet poker and powerful drugs.  But in his high-earning bank job, the former Ainsdale Hope and KGV student spiralled back into trouble after accessing loans and high-value credit cards with surprising ease.

Southern Mo. man who placed illegal gambling machines at businesses sentenced to probation

A southern Missouri man who placed illegal gambling machines at several businesses in the region has been sentenced to three years’ probation.  The U.S. Attorney’s office said 63-year-old Morris Guy Ramseur, of West Plains, must also pay the balance of a $200,000 forfeiture representing his proceeds from the operation. Ramseur was sentenced Friday in U.S. District Court. He pleaded guilty in May to running the illegal operations from 1997 to January 2005. Prosecutors said Ramseur arranged with owners of convenience stores, bars and other businesses to let him install video slot poker machines and other devices. He then split the net proceeds with the business owners.

Five jailed in Shanxi for kidnapping teens

Five people, who are convicted of kidnapping and illegal gambling have been sentenced to jail terms ranging from two to eight years by a court in northern Shanxi Province. The verdict said Liu Jifeng, Ma Qingfeng and their complice lured or abducted teenagers to Myanmar, forcing them to gamble in casinos between July and October 2008. The kidnappers then held the young people, demanding ransoms of tens of thousands yuan from their family.

Duo pleads to embezzling $13M from Gretna company

A Louisiana woman and a Kentucky man have pleaded guilty to embezzling nearly $13 million from a Gretna oil company. The U.S. attorney’s office in New Orleans says White and Kinney stole checks and money from John W. Stone Oil Distributor LLC. in Gretna between 1995 and 2007. Prosecutors say White reviewed payments at Stone Oil, a midstream and dock-fueling business, and Kinney was her sister’s boyfriend.  Authorities allege the stolen funds were used to pay personal expenses, gambling and to fund a racing company.

Problem Gambling Experts Say Sports Betting a Teen Crisis

An expert on problem gambling among youth says sports betting is an epidemic among high school students. Wagering on sports is seen as a gateway introduction for teens to other forms of gambling. “The average I find is a high school with a population of 1,000 has two [student-bookmakers],” Elman told NorthJersey.com. Elman says the sportsbook is often passed down from class to class as students work their way through the schools.

Elman says parents are often unaware of the gambling until children steal from them to pay betting debts. “They end up using the credit card, or they take something from the house and sell it,” the counselor advises. Police say they have neither the time nor resources to investigate without complaints, and that the schools are handling the problem. But Elman, who does not involve legal authorities to avoid scaring off teens in need of help, says that compulsive gambling unattended can wreck lives before parents are aware of the danger.

Sports betting magnate James Giordano goes to jail

Last Wednesday, a former bookmaker named James Giordano pleaded guilty to promoting gambling in New York. The 55-year-old Pinecrest resident was indicted in 2006 for running a sports betting website in the Caribbean that took millions of dollars in bets from dozens of U.S.-based bookies and gamblers.  It was all part of an epic battle over the legality of Internet gambling.

Giordano — who spoke at length for the first time about his life — began his gambling career at a New York-area grocery store, where he watched a produce manager take bets from employees and then hand off the cash to a small Italian fellow. He remembers taking the produce manager aside. “I told him: ‘You gather bets… it seems to me if you eliminate the phone call, you can keep the money.'”  Soon he began his own little bookmaking operation, first with the produce manager and later on his own.

For more information on the dangers of gambling, please visit CASINO WATCH, & CASINO WATCH FOUNDATION

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