A Brief Look at Crime 9/16- 9/22

Middleton Sport Bowl owners plead guilty to skimming $268K from gambling machines, tax evasion

The owners of a Middleton bowling center have pleaded guilty to federal tax charges for skimming more than $268,000 from gambling machine receipts and not reporting that income on tax returns. Dudley Hellenbrand, 67, and Cherie Hellenbrand, 45, both of Middleton and owners of Middleton Sport Bowl, entered guilty pleas on Thursday to filing false 2017 IRS tax returns, which under-reported their adjusted gross income. Scott C. Blader, U.S. attorney for the Western District of Wisconsin, said the two contracted with a video gambling machine vendor to put such machines in the bowling center on University Avenue. The contract with the vendor had the Hellenbrands getting 75% of the profit from the machines and the vendor getting 25%, Blader said in a statement “Both defendants admitted they skimmed the (gambling machine) cash receipts and did not report the skimmed receipts on their state and federal income tax returns,” the statement said. The total amount skimmed by the owners from 2010 to 2017 was $268,852.04.

Husband of woman who embezzled $13 million from North Side firm found guilty of lying to IRS

A federal jury in Pittsburgh found a Clearfield County man guilty of lying to the Internal Revenue Service about his income while he and his wife blew millions of embezzled dollars on luxury boats, cars, designer handbags, vacations and gambling, federal prosecutors said Friday. Following three weeks of arguments and testimony, a jury of nine men and three women deliberated for less than three hours, U.S. Attorney Scott Brady said. They determined Mills was guilty of three counts of filing false tax returns. The defense for Gary Mills argued during his trial that he “allegedly believed the monies came from gambling,” prosecutors said. But in April 2012, the IRS sent the couple a notice of deficiency stating that they owed at least $930,000 in back taxes, penalties and interest stemming from the years 2003-07. While litigating the civil audit, Gary Mills “offset gambling winnings with gambling losses” of about $100,000 a year from 2012-14, prosecutors said.

Gambling addict found guilty of stabbing wife 60 times after losing bet

A gambling addict has been found guilty of hacking his wife to death while in a rage over a losing bet. Vicious Jalal Uddin, 47, slashed and chopped at 31-year-old Asma Begum’s head, face, neck and back at least 58 times at their flat in Canning Town, East London. She had previously told police that he beat her after they argued about money, and said chef Uddin had a “gambling habit”. In November 2016 Mrs Begum told a housing officer that Uddin ‘hit her when she refused to give him money’, the Old Bailey heard. Uddin, who is Bangladeshi, denied murder but was convicted after the jury deliberated for just over three hours. He had admitted the lesser charge of manslaughter. Prosecutor Danny Robinson QC said Uddin left his wife with little to pay the bills and feed and clothe the family. ‘She said that she often ended up giving him money for his gambling to stop him hitting her,’ Mr Robinson added. ‘As you will hear, arguments between them caused by his gambling habit were not unusual. ‘Mr Uddin was known to the employees of William Hill bookmakers in east London as the ‘Angry Indian’ because he would often hit the gaming machines when he was losing.’

Judge gives former Greenwich store clerk chance to repay $100K she stole 

The former manager of a Greenwich convenience store can avoid jail if she reimburses her ex-boss the $106,000 she stole several years ago. Julienne Julmeus, 25, of Seaside Avenue, Stamford, was stealing $17,000 per month from the store she managed on East Putnam Avenue, Senior Assistant State’s Attorney Joseph Valdes said. The money was supposedly being used to pay off her husband’s gambling debts and help support her extended family in Haiti. More than two years after her arrest, Julmeus pleaded guilty Wednesday to first-degree larceny, a conviction that could carry up to 20 years in prison. But Judge Gary White said he would give Julmeus, a mother of a 3-month-old child, a chance to repay the money she stole. White offered her a 10-year suspended jail sentence and five years probation if she made restitution. White said Julmeus needs to establish a repayment plan by the time she returns to court in November.

Suburban Chicago man gets 10 years for scamming immigrants

A suburban Chicago man has been sentenced to 10 years in prison for scamming nearly $700,000 from immigrants living in the U.S. without legal permission and seeking residency status. Federal prosecutors say 57-year-old James Keegan of Cicero was sentenced Wednesday after pleading guilty to one count of wire fraud in March. They say Keegan operated a fraudulent immigration advocacy service for nine months in 2017 and falsely claimed he formerly worked as an attorney with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. Prosecutors say more than 200 immigrants paid Keegan over $687,000. The Chicago Sun-Times reports the average fee was about $3,000 per applicant. Prosecutors say he offered services including promises of citizenship but never filed applications for his clients, instead spending their money on gambling losses and personal expenses.

Former employee pleads guilty to stealing $200,000 from Whatcom casino

A former Silver Reef Casino employee has pleaded guilty in federal court to stealing $200,000 from the business in November 2018. Shannon Marie Morris pleaded guilty June 12 to one count of theft by an employee of a gaming establishment on Indian lands in United States District Court for the Western District of Washington in Seattle, according to federal court records. In a statement supporting her guilty plea, Morris said that on Nov. 24, 2018, she entered the Silver Reef Casino, walked into the cash collection area, stole $200,000 from the casino and left with the money, according to court records. Morris was an employee at the casino at the time, records show. Morris is no longer employed at the casino, according to marketing director Eric Larsen. In a story previously reported in The Bellingham Herald, Morris allegedly called 911 to report that she had been forced by a man with a gun to commit the theft. She also allegedly told law enforcement that the man had mentioned wanting to plant a bomb in the casino.

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