A Brief Look at Crime 10/29 – 11/04

California man sentenced for baccarat scheme

A Southern California man was sentenced Monday to six years in federal prison for defrauding Station Casinos out of more than $1 million in a baccarat credit scheme. De Rong Shang, 51, also was ordered to pay $1,011,400 in restitution and serve three years of supervised release when he gets out of prison. Prosecutors had sought a nine-year term behind bars, but Senior U.S. District Judge Roger Hunt said he didn’t believe a tougher sentence was needed in this case. Both Shang and family members tearfully begged Hunt in court for leniency. The Chinese-born Shang, who also faces deportation after he gets out of prison, showed remorse and apologized to the judge.

 Compulsive Gambler Jailed for Murdering Friend Over £250,000 Debt

A man who shot and stabbed his friend to death, rather than pay back a £250,000 loan, has been jailed for at least 28 years.  Lundrim Gjikokaj , 30, from Reading arrived to see Cima Sogojeva at his home in Golders Green in 2008 with a box of chocolates – and then attacked him.  Gjikokaj was originally arrested on suspicion of murder on 16 October 2008 but was bailed on a number of occasions.  Detectives established that he had continually dodged Cima because of the money he owed him and following a detailed enquiry it was established that he had met the victim at the victim’s home address on the morning of the murder. A search of the crime scene and wider area led to the discovery of crucial forensic evidence which Gjokokaj to the shooting.  He was charged in January this year.

 Gambling addict steals $260,000

A former payroll worker has admitted stealing more than a quarter of a million dollars from her employer to fund an expensive gambling addiction. Gladys Ruth Campbell, 64, of Feilding, looked after the accounts of Lower Hutt firm Aztech Engineering.  She started working there in 2009 as a temporary staff member, before gaining a permanent position in 2010. Between March that year and December last year she took $261,205 by falsifying entries into the firm’s MYOB computer accounting program. That included holiday pay and sick leave overpayments of $6802. ”[She] stated she wasn’t aware of the final figure and used the money to supplement a gambling addiction of $600 to $700 a day,” the summary says. Campbell has no previous convictions. Defence lawyer Peter Brosnahan said his client had health and psychiatric problems.

 ‘Fall from grace’: bank manager stole $250,000 from clients to fund gambling addiction

A Commonwealth Bank account manager who stole nearly $250,000 from her clients, including author Thomas Keneally, was driven by a gambling addiction that once left her in fear for her life, a court has heard. Karen Myhang Chau, 39, repeatedly transferred large sums from six customers’ accounts into her own account at the ANZ between October 2010 and January this year, and was charged with six counts of dishonestly obtaining financial advantage. Among Chau’s victims were Thomas and Judith Keneally, from whom she stole $71,500 while working as their personal account manager. During Chau’s sentencing hearing in the Downing Centre Local Court today, her barrister, Sheridan Goodwin, told the court that her client’s gambling addiction was the cause of the crime.

 25 arrested over cock-fighting

A large group of men arrested over an illegal cockfighting ring have pleaded guilty to animal cruelty and illegal gambling. The 25 men fronted court following raids at Rockbank in Melbourne’s outer-west in September and were fined up to two and a half thousand dollars each. The Sunshine magistrates court was told more than 200 birds had to be destroyed and more than 100 thousand dollars was seized. Another 55 men will front court on the same charges next month.

14 accused of using casino kiosks to run $1-million bank scam

Fourteen people in Southern California have been indicted on charges of stealing more than $1 million from Citibank through a scam involving cash-advance kiosks at casinos, federal prosecutors in San Diego announced Friday. The scam involved making simultaneous withdrawals far in excess of the amount in the individual’s account, according to court papers. The bank’s security system was not equipped to detect simultaneous withdrawals. The alleged mastermind was Ara Keshishyan, 29, of Fillmore. Co-defendants are from Glendale, North Hollywood, Burbank, Winnetka, Mission Hills, Huntington Beach and Pasadena. The casinos involved include the Morongo, Pechanga, San Manuel, Aqua Caliente, Chukchansi and Spa Resort casinos in California, and the Tropicana, Wynn, Bicycle and Whiskey Pete’s casinos in Las Vegas, and Harrah’s in Laughlin, Nev. After getting money from the cash-advance kiosks, some of the 14 would then go on gambling sprees at the casinos, with some of the casinos giving them free rooms after mistaking them for high-rollers, according to the indictment.

Man beaten to death due to gambling

A 34-year-old man was beaten to death by one of his relatives at Jakara village under Ganjam district’s Kabisurya Nagar police limit, about 60 km from here today.  The victim was identified as Tuna Nahak, while Prafulla Nayak (34), one of the relations of the deceased in the same village allegedly killed him. The accused person was arrested, said inspector in charge, Kabisurya Nagar police station SLK Prasad. The incident was suspected to be over gambling in the village on the Kumar Purnima night on Monday. Difference between the two arose when the victim lost in the gambling. Tuna asked for his money from Prafulla despite losing in the gambling leading to a fight between them.

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