A Brief Look at Crime 12/31 – 01/06

Bloody clothes linked casino worker to murdered girl

Las Vegas police revealed new details in the stabbing death of a young girl found just after Christmas, saying the child’s blood was on clothes recovered from the apartment of a woman accused of slashing a casino dealer with razor blades.  An arrest report released Monday shows how police came to suspect Brenda Stokes in the death of 10-year-old Jade Morris, whose body was found in an undeveloped housing tract last week after being reported missing by her mother.  The girl had last been seen alive at about 5 p.m. Dec. 21, when she left with Stokes to go Christmas shopping. Stokes, 50, had been dating the child’s father for about four years and the child considered the woman her stepmother, police said.  About four hours after picking the girl up, Stokes went to the Bellagio and attacked a co-worker, according to police. The woman was hospitalized with deep cuts on her face, including one from her ear to the edge of her mouth.  Stokes was wrestled to the ground at the casino with razors in each hand, police said. She was initially booked on suspicion of burglary, battery and mayhem in the casino attack.

 Death and violence around casinos

The year ended in violence at several casinos around the country. A 10-year-old girl was stabbed to death and her bloody clothes were found at the apartment of a woman who hours before attacked a co-worker at a casino in Las Vegas. The casino worker was hospitalized with deep cuts on her face, including one from her ear to the edge of her mouth. Her attacker was wrestled to the ground at the casino with razors in each hand, police said.

A couple was shot while driving on the highway after leaving a casino in Detroit. The woman was shot nine times, but her injuries were not life threatening. The man was also injured and is expected to make a full recovery. Two weeks ago a man shot and killed a woman working at casino in Las Vegas and then shot himself. The series of events is just more antecdotal evidence to support studies that shows crime increases in areas where casinos locate. Some studies claim there is no link to casinos and crime, but a number of studies support the claim.

Write Gambling Software, Go to Prison

In a criminal case sure to make programmers nervous, a software maker who licenses a program used by online casinos and bookmakers overseas is being charged with promoting gambling in New York because authorities say his software was used by others for illegal betting in that state. New York authorities say that about $2.3 million that Robert Stuart and his company, Extension Software, received in cash and money orders for licensing his software constitutes direct proceeds of illegal, U.S.-based bookmaking operations. “These defendants abetted large-scale illegal gambling in the U.S. and abroad,” said District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr. in a press release in October when Stuart was charged. “In doing so, they gave bettors an easy way to place illegal wagers, and created an appetite for further unlawful activity.”

Crooked bank teller shocks judge

A District Court judge wants to know how a bank teller convicted of forgery and jailed could land a job at another bank within months of being freed and go on to steal HK$2.2 million from customers. Former Standard Chartered teller Simon Wong Sai-man, 32, pleaded guilty yesterday to two counts of forgery and one of theft after tapping into customers’ accounts and stealing money. Judge Frankie Yiu Fun-che was told Wong is a heavy football gambler and stole from bank customers to cover his debts. But the judge expressed shock and bewilderment when told Wong served two years in jail for forgery after stealing HK$860,000 from customers of Hang Seng Bank, where he was a teller from 2004 to 2007.

Match-fixing scandal in South Africa overshadows Africa Cup of Nations

So much for the World Cup legacy. As South Africa prepares to host the Africa Cup of Nations, it should have been celebrating the fact that it had the infrastructure to step in as host when civil war forced the tournament to be moved from Libya, showing off once again the infrastructure built for 2010. As it is, the South African Football Association is left dealing with a match-fixing scandal whose tentacles stretch across the world and that has forced its president and four other officials to stand down.

The president, Kirsten Nematandani, and the officials, Dennis Mumble, Lindile ‘Ace’ Kika, Adeel Carelse and Barney Kujane, were asked to “take a voluntary leave of absence” pending an internal investigation into allegations they were complicit in the rigging of matches by the convicted fixer Wilson Raj Perumal and his company Football4U. Among the matches under investigation were two friendlies played by South Africa, one against Guatemala, the other against Colombia, in May 2010, a fortnight before the World Cup began.

Danvers man gets 2 years for running Web gambling ring

A 66-year-old Danvers man is heading to federal prison for two years, his sentence for running an illegal online betting ring out of his former homes in Peabody and Kingston, N.H., prosecutors announced.  John Giannelli Sr. had pleaded guilty in September to charges of money laundering, running an illegal gambling operation and violating regulations of the Internal Revenue Service, which investigated the case along with the FBI.  The two-year sentence, as well as a $452,000 cash forfeiture, were announced yesterday by federal prosecutors in New Hampshire. Prosecutors in the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Concord, N.H., where the case was heard, said Giannelli ran a website that allowed some 300 customers to make sports bets online.  An analysis of computer records recovered by investigators after a search of Giannelli’s home showed that in one 12-week period, the gambling operation generated profits of around $188,000. Prosecutors say the scheme went on for four years.

 Bernard Kilpatrick’s finances detailed IRS agent testifies he lost $218K gambling, underpaid income taxes

Detroit — After Bernard Kilpatrick left the public payroll and began a consulting business, he brought in more than $2.2 million as a business consultant while his son was mayor of Detroit, according to testimony Thursday in the Kilpatricks’ public corruption trial.  In addition to the millions of dollars he generated during Kwame Kilpatrick’s tenure, Bernard Kilpatrick was a heavy-duty gambler and a tax cheat, according to an Internal Revenue Service agent.  The trial returned from a 12-day Christmas break with a detailed examination of Kilpatrick’s finances and spending habits, which included big bills at an area liquor shop and gambling jags at Detroit and Las Vegas casinos. IRS agent Rowena Schuch testified she believed Bernard Kilpatrick underpaid his taxes by hiding income from the government. He should owe the IRS an additional $184,000 from 2004, 2005 and 2007, she said.

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

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