A Brief Look at Crime 10/15 – 10/21

Gambling business manager shoots and kills nephew, who was called to calm him down

A manager at a gambling establishment shot and killed his nephew Saturday after a co-worker called the victim to calm his uncle down, Hernando deputies reported. Authorities arrested Roger Vazquez, 56 of Spring Hill, on homicide and assault charges, the Hernando County Sheriff’s Office reported Sunday. Vazquez killed Raymond Correa, 44, deputies said. The incident began after 5 p.m., according to a release by Sheriff’s Office spokesman Michael Terry, at Lucky Fish Games on the 10400 block of Northcliffe Boulevard. Vazquez, a manager at Lucky Fish Games, had been “acting erratically,” witnesses told deputies, according to the release. He was waving a loaded gun inside the business. His co-worker, Laau Paselio, called the store owner, Jose Santana. Santana decided to call Vazquez’s nephew, who can usually calm his uncle down, witnesses said. Correa, the nephew, arrived at Lucky Fish Games and talked with his uncle, persuading him to unload the gun and put it down. But Vazquez then pulled out a second gun and pointed it at his nephew. Deputies did not report what led to him drawing the firearm.

Canadian man sentenced for bilking US victims out of $18M

A Canadian con man who bilked at least 60,000 U.S. residents through a cross-border telemarketing scheme has been sentenced to federal prison. A judge in Los Angeles sentenced Mark Wilson on Monday to more than 11 years behind bars. Prosecutors say the Vancouver man targeted mainly the elderly with a scheme that sold them a non-existent credit card protection service. The victims were charged about $300 for phony protection against — ironically — fraudulent credit card charges. Authorities say the scam raked in about $18 million from people in 37 states. Prosecutors say Wilson funded a lavish lifestyle that included luxury boats, a fleet of cars, Las Vegas gambling jaunts and an offshore bank account in the South Pacific. In March, Wilson was convicted of mail and wire fraud.

Accountant sentenced for embezzling millions to gamble

A 35-year-old staff accountant who embezzled more than $500,000 from a Wichita company has been sentenced to nearly three years in prison. Phillip Jelinek, of Wichita, was sentenced Tuesday for felony theft after he stole at least $587,000 over two years from A-OK Enterprises in Wichita. Prosecutors say he transferred money from the company’s PayPal accounts into his personal bank account and used some of it to gamble. The Wichita Eagle reports that the company estimated Jelinek embezzled about $1.5 million. The Sedgwick County district attorney’s office said Jelinek’s crimes forced A-OK to declare bankruptcy, lay off employees and close some Wichita locations. Jelinek asked to be placed on probation because he is seeking treatment for a gambling addiction and sold his home to help pay back the money.

Online sports bookie in Texas must serve 3 years, pay $7M

A convicted online bookie in West Texas must serve three years in federal prison and pay $7 million in what prosecutors call an illegal sports gambling and tax scam. Prosecutors say 40-year-old Jose Abelardo Dominguez of Odessa was sentenced Wednesday in Midland. Dominguez in June pleaded guilty to money laundering and tax evasion. Authorities say Dominguez, from 2011 to 2016, offered illegal opportunities for online sports bets. Dominguez in 2014 earned more than $2.3 million through the online gambling operation but reported taxable income of only about $63,000. A federal judge also ordered Dominguez to pay more than $1.9 million to the IRS, plus a nearly $5.1 million judgment. Dominguez must also forfeit real estate in Ector and Midland County and about $515,000 in confiscated cash.

Lawsuit alleges Wynn cheated to win casino license

Casino mogul Steve Wynn and the company he founded lied and covered up misconduct to dupe Massachusetts into granting a license for a $2 billion casino, a former rival alleges in a federal lawsuit. The lawsuit, filed Monday in Boston’s federal court, says Sterling Suffolk Racecourse would have prevailed over Wynn Resorts had there been an “honest competition.” Instead, Wynn Resorts fixed the application process and concealed Wynn’s sexual misconduct to illegally secure a license for the Everett casino that’s scheduled to open in June, the lawsuit alleges. Wynn resigned as chairman and chief executive of Wynn Resorts in February, and the company renamed its casino from Wynn Boston Harbor to Encore Boston Harbor after sexual misconduct allegations surfaced against him. Wynn denies the allegations. “The Wynn Defendants were granted a license to operate their casino on a toxic waste site loaded with levels of arsenic still so high that a child day care center would not be permitted to be housed there, even after the site was remediated and the regulations amended to countenance higher levels,” says the lawsuit, which alleges Wynn broke racketeering laws.

Former Hudson Valley Comptroller Embezzled $2.5 Million

A Hudson Valley man, employed by two local companies, embezzled over $2.5 million to fund his gambling and more. On Thursday, Mark Cina, 56, of Poughkeepsie was sentenced to 41 months in prison after he pleaded guilty to mail fraud and tax evasion. “Mark Cina embezzled millions of dollars to line his pockets at the great expense and suffering of his trusting employer, a Hudson Valley entrepreneur and small businessman,” U.S. Attorney Geoffrey S. Berman said in a press release. “Theft like the defendant’s is intolerable, and today’s sentencing shows that an employee’s choice to engage in such a crime is a choice to go to prison.” A complaint unsealed in Southern District of New York court in July 2017, allegedCina embezzled over $2.5 million from two Town of Poughkeepsie manufacturing companies where he was comptroller, over the course of at least seven years. One company’s work included a solar-powered ring of lights encircling the top of MetLife Stadium. The other local company molded plastic.

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