Daily Archives: January 8, 2018

A Brief Look at Crime 12/24 – 01/07

Missouri man who used Medicaid funds on strippers & gambling sentenced

The owner of a Festus nursing home who used Medicaid funds for strippers, gambling and other personal expenses while the facilities were falling apart has been sentenced to nearly 3.5 years in prison. Federal prosecutors say 53-year-old Johnnie Mac Sells, of St. Peters, the former CEO of Benchmark Health Care, spent more than $667,000 in Medicaid funds on his personal lifestyle. He pleaded guilty in April to health care fraud. Benchmark owned long-term care facilities in Missouri, Kentucky and Tennessee. Federal prosecutors say residents at Benchmark homes didn’t receive medication and employees sometimes used their own money to buy food. The state rescued 60 residents at a Benchmark Home in Missouri in the summer of 2016 because of unsafe living conditions, such as piled up trash and fly infestations.

Former Mayor Arrested for Gambling Away Scholarship Funds

Middlesex County Prosecutor Andrew C. Carey announced that Poliseno was “charged with stealing from a scholarship fund set up to honor the memory of a Spotswood EMT” in a statement earlier this afternoon. The one-time chief of the Spotswood Fire Department turned himself into authorities at the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office at 10 a.m. this morning. Poliseno was charged after a joint investigation with the Division of Criminal Justice, Detective Kevin Schroeck of the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office and the Spotswood Police Department. According to details released by the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office, Poliseno withdrew an undisclosed amount of money from the scholarship fund set up to honor Hinal Patel in June of 2016. The money was then used for the purpose of gambling in Atlantic City.

Woman Targeted Credit Unions in Elaborate ID Fraud Scheme

A Bowie, Md. woman is spending the next six years of her life in prison after she used an elaborate ID fraud scheme that primarily targeted credit unions and led to financial losses. Tonia Latrice Lewis was sentenced to serve a 70-month prison sentence last month in U.S. District Court in Alexandria, Va. Federal Judge Claude Hilton was also ordered Lewis to pay restitution of nearly $250,000. Federal prosecutors said Lewis sought more than $600,000 in loans and financing. Lewis was convicted for bank fraud, mail fraud and aggravated identify theft. Lewis used the stolen funds to buy jewelry, clothing, and she gambled away some of the money at a West Virginia casino.

Founder of Absolute Poker Ends Legal Battle with US Government

Founder of Absolute Poker Scott Tom seems to have completed his legal dealings with the United States government after paying $300,000 in fines and serving one week in jail. Tom is reportedly back in Antigua after completing a plea deal stemming from charges involving Black Friday. Tom was hit with several felony charges from the infamous Black Friday of 2011, and finally came back to America in February. Tom had been on the run for several years now, and once back in the states, decided to plead not guilty and was then released on a $500,000 bond. Tom plead guilty to one count of being an accessory after the fact in connection with transmission of gambling information, which is a misdemeanor. As part of the agreement, Tom would pay $300,000 and was released on September 28^th . During the sentencing, the attorney representing Tom, James Henderson, asked that his client be sentenced to time served. But he was then sentenced to seven days in jail and then after serving this time, was allowed to leave the country. The judge in the case stated that she did not feel Tom had served any time in jail and deciding a time served sentence would not be appropriate.The punishment seems quite minimal considering that many players were victimized by Absolute Poker and UltimateBet, with the remissions process just now getting started.

Missing College Gambler was Homicide Victim: Body Found Near Pechanga Casino

The [woman’s] body, a 30-year-old resident of the college area near San Diego State University, has been found wrapped in a blanket alongside a road near Pechanga Casino close to the Riverside County line. The Medical Examiner has ruled her death a homicide. Cause of death was asphyxiation. The body was clothed and partially decomposed, the San Diego Union-Tribune reports. A person searching through a dumpster for recyclables in Vista found her cell phone in the trash, charged it and called Smith’s mother. National City Police launched a search for the missing woman who has suffered from depression and has a history of drug use, her family told police. Learning that she frequented casinos, detectives visited every casino in the region and discovered her body near the Pechanga Casino and Resort.

80-year-old gambler sentenced for theft and mistreatment of dependent adult

An 80-year-old woman who took more than $57,000 from an 89-year-old acquaintance heard her fate last week in Sedgwick County District Court. The Sedgwick County District Attorney’s Office says Shirley Morgan,80, was convicted of mistreatment of a dependent adult, a felony in Kansas. The district attorney’s office says a judge sentenced Morgan to a controlling term of 32 months in prison, but granted three years’ probation, noting her age and lack of criminal history. “Morgan was ordered to pay restitution while on probation and is prohibited from gambling,” the district attorney’s office says. The charge against Morgan accuses her of abusing her status as a durable power of attorney for the 89-year-old acquaintance and using the woman’s money and assets for her own benefit, the district attorney’s office says. The district attorney’s office says this includes gambling instead of paying for the older woman’s nursing home expenses.

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