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More offshore gambling arrests

Online GamblingOnline Gambling: More offshore gambling arrests
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New case involves same pattern of offshore web site accepting sportsbets from US residents over the phone

Four men were indicted for allegedly running an illegal offshore gambling operation, federal authorities said.

The U.S. attorney's office reported Wednesday that four men have been indicted in connection with an ongoing investigation into a gambling and money laundering scheme that allegedly involves facilitating illegal betting through a Costa Rica-based Web site.

According to the 12-count indictment, which was issued last Thursday and unsealed Tuesday, the defendants face charges of conspiracy and conducting an illegal gambling business, conspiracy to launder funds from the business, and conspiracy to use facilities in interstate and foreign commerce to promote the unlawful activity.

Those facilities include e-mail, telephone communication and an Internet Web site.

The web site www.bettheduck.com no longer appears to be online, and returns "502" error messages, indicating that several steps have been taken to ensure that the web site, if it is still operating, is impossible to access. 

Prosecutors said the indictment is the expansion of a criminal complaint filed on July 26 that charged eight men with similar crimes.

The indictment charges 61-year-old Houshang "Hoosh" Pourmohamad of Richmond, who also was charged in the July 26 complaint.

The indictment also charges 62-year-old Richard "Alex" Anderson of Los Angeles; Darwin Mobley of San Jose, Costa Rica; and Jorge Esteban Hall Zumbado, also of San Jose, Costa Rica.

Prosecutors said the charges are the result of an investigation by the Internal Revenue Service's criminal investigation unit.

According to the indictment, the defendants were part of a gambling scheme whereby players placed bets and wagers via the Internet, at Web site bettheduck.com or through a toll-free number, with one or more people in Costa Rica who were paid to operate the illegal gambling business there.

The indictment alleges that "agents" within the U.S. collected the bets and wagers, in the form of checks and currency, from the players and then delivered them to "runners," who delivered the funds to the bookmaker.

Betting funds were used to pay expenses of the business, including the salaries of persons working in Costa Rica, with the intent to promote the carrying on of the illegal gambling business.

The indictment says Anderson, Mobley, and Zumbado allegedly operated the gambling business in Costa Rica and received compensation for doing so with funds sent by wire transfer from the U.S. to a bank account in Costa Rica.

Pourmohamad allegedly worked as an agent in the U.S., collecting currency from players in the U.S. and delivering it either to the bookmaker or to the runners.

As an agent, Pourmohamad received a commission based on a percentage of his players' losses, according to the indictment.

Pourmohamad was arrested in Richmond on July 26 on the earlier criminal complaint and made his initial appearance in federal court in Oakland today. He's scheduled to return to court on Sept. 12

Anderson, Mobley, and Zumbado haven't yet been arrested.

Each count carries a maximum sentence of five years in federal prison, a $250,000 fine, three years supervised release and a $100 special assessment.

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25 comments. Last comment 10 years ago by Todd.
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JAP69's avatar - alas
South Carolina
United States
Member #6
November 4, 2001
8795 Posts
Offline
Posted: August 17, 2006, 9:42 am - IP Logged

The web site www.bettheduck.com no longer appears to be online, and returns "502" error messages, indicating that several steps have been taken to ensure that the web site, if it is still operating, is impossible to access. 

Does that mean that the U.S. can block or error code any site that it desires?

Type

    LOTTOMIKE's avatar - cash money.jpg
    Tennessee
    United States
    Member #7853
    October 15, 2004
    11338 Posts
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    Posted: August 17, 2006, 9:44 am - IP Logged

    i'm wondering if this is going to have any affect on the bill thats being voted on.it sure isn't helping our cause any with these knuckleheads getting caught......

      Todd's avatar - Cylon 2.gif
      Chief Bottle Washer
      New Jersey
      United States
      Member #1
      May 31, 2000
      23348 Posts
      Online
      Posted: August 17, 2006, 10:51 am - IP Logged

      The web site www.bettheduck.com no longer appears to be online, and returns "502" error messages, indicating that several steps have been taken to ensure that the web site, if it is still operating, is impossible to access. 

      Does that mean that the U.S. can block or error code any site that it desires?

      It probably means the site's data center removed the DNS records.  The US government cannot block it.  (At least not yet....)

       

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        BILOXI, MISSISSIPPI
        United States
        Member #19651
        August 3, 2005
        621 Posts
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        Posted: August 17, 2006, 11:00 am - IP Logged

        If it's about tax    Put big computers in Biloxi and run all bet though them .      The Gulf states need the Tax  $$$$  and jobs  problem sloved

          bellyache's avatar - 64x64a9wg

          United States
          Member #12618
          March 18, 2005
          2060 Posts
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          Posted: August 17, 2006, 1:52 pm - IP Logged

          I wonder how long this internet gambling crusade is going to last.

          Dance like no one is watching.

            Avatar

            United States
            Member #2460
            October 7, 2003
            766 Posts
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            Posted: August 17, 2006, 2:05 pm - IP Logged

            They say that China runs or has a country wide blockade, that is they filter out what comes in and also what goes out.

            The  BILLION + "children " there can only see and send what Big Red Papa allows them too.

            The US might not be too far behind on also doing the same here.

            They might even add gov propaganda pop-ups to everything that you see, something like what Hitler would had done.

            There already are some ISPs that run the Web thru a filtered proxy, like PAX.

            It might not be too long now.

            Where is "Triangle Boy" when I need it?

            EXCALIBUR is no more that "Handle" is dead, gone.
            Maybe sometime in the future I might come back as LANTERN again, but maybe not, if I don't come back as LANTERN in the future then I won't come back at all, but as I said there is no more EXCALIBUR.

              Avatar
              Amarillo/Austin
              United States
              Member #1424
              April 25, 2003
              696 Posts
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              Posted: August 17, 2006, 7:56 pm - IP Logged

              If the government blocks gambling sites and doesn't block porn sites, we need to file a class action suit to force them to either block porn sites or leave gambling sites alone.  Are there any lawyers who want a lot of publicity on a pro bono basis? Perhaps we can start by suing the two moron "Con" gressmen who started this mess to start with.

              The people need to hold our alleged representatives directly responsible for the trouble they cause.  That will make them think twice before pushing trash legislation instead of defending their nation and upholding the Constitution.

              I suspect that once the election is over, it will go away until the next election cycle.  The morons who represent us refuse to protect us from illegal aliens and terrorists, but they sure can take hard stands on flag burning and online gambling.  The "Con" gress is obviously full of gutless traitors who are more interested in campaign funds and reelection than the people they represent. 

              Orangeman                        Thumbs Down

                dvdiva's avatar - 8ball

                United States
                Member #2338
                September 17, 2003
                2063 Posts
                Offline
                Posted: August 18, 2006, 12:44 am - IP Logged

                I'm so glad with people wanting to blow us up and others selling children for sex that they take the time out to focus on the real enemy, Americans gambling in their own homes.

                  Avatar
                  New Mexico
                  United States
                  Member #12305
                  March 10, 2005
                  2984 Posts
                  Offline
                  Posted: August 18, 2006, 8:05 pm - IP Logged

                  Each count carries a maximum sentence of five years in federal prison, a $250,000 fine, three years supervised release and a $100 special assessment.

                  No excuse is too small to lock a man behind bars and confiscate his property in the US.

                  You've all sat quietly by and tacitly consented while others have been jailed and robbed for doing things you didn't happen to do, but which acts also had no victims.  Many of you have even applauded.

                  Even though I'm saddened to see another piece of freedom noisily disintegrate under the iron heel there's something mildly satisfying in watching your whines when the freedoms going away are some you happen to enjoy.

                  If it's progress and legitimate social improvement when they build another prison to hold prostitutes, drug possessors, all manner of victimless criminals, so's this. 

                  I read somewhere there are millions of porn sites these days, which is a bizarre statement about something in humanity

                  Each of those millions of sites must have hundreds, maybe thousands of people visiting them.  Thousands of millions of people visiting porn sites?  I don't applaud it, but it's the business of the people visiting the sites and the godawful mess that must be going on in the (has to be) millions of people who are performing sex acts for cameras.

                  Some of you've alluded to how they ought to be focusing on that, instead of this behavior, which is okay because you happen to like it.

                  May you get as much iron heel as you've begged for. 

                  Absorb the good, ignore the bad, weigh the ugly.

                  It's about number behavior.

                  Egos don't count.

                   

                  Dedicated to the memory of Big Loooser

                   

                    Rick G's avatar - avatar 1766.jpg
                    FEMA Region V Camp #21
                    United States
                    Member #520
                    July 27, 2002
                    5699 Posts
                    Offline
                    Posted: August 18, 2006, 8:56 pm - IP Logged

                    Each count carries a maximum sentence of five years in federal prison, a $250,000 fine, three years supervised release and a $100 special assessment.

                    No excuse is too small to lock a man behind bars and confiscate his property in the US.

                    You've all sat quietly by and tacitly consented while others have been jailed and robbed for doing things you didn't happen to do, but which acts also had no victims.  Many of you have even applauded.

                    Even though I'm saddened to see another piece of freedom noisily disintegrate under the iron heel there's something mildly satisfying in watching your whines when the freedoms going away are some you happen to enjoy.

                    If it's progress and legitimate social improvement when they build another prison to hold prostitutes, drug possessors, all manner of victimless criminals, so's this. 

                    I read somewhere there are millions of porn sites these days, which is a bizarre statement about something in humanity

                    Each of those millions of sites must have hundreds, maybe thousands of people visiting them.  Thousands of millions of people visiting porn sites?  I don't applaud it, but it's the business of the people visiting the sites and the godawful mess that must be going on in the (has to be) millions of people who are performing sex acts for cameras.

                    Some of you've alluded to how they ought to be focusing on that, instead of this behavior, which is okay because you happen to like it.

                    May you get as much iron heel as you've begged for. 

                    I agree100%.  If there is no victim, there is no crime.  We can't read victims or create potential victims into the "crime" as defined by our government or social mores.  A crime has to have a victim to be a crime.  If a person commits a crime against themselves it is a crime against themselves and there is no victim.  A criminal and a victim involve two individuals not one:  One person perpetrating the crime (criminal) and the victim being an unwilling and injured participant of that crime.

                    That is why the US has the highest prison population per capita in the world and is still building more prisons as we speak.

                    Gambling, prostitution and drug possession are examples of jailable crimes that do not involve a victim.

                    I've said it before and I'll say it 'till my last breath, we must get the chihuahuas out of our privates, or we won't have any privates left. 

                    Posted 4/6:  IL Pick 3 midday and evening until they hit:  555, 347 (str8).


                      Avatar

                      United States
                      Member #2460
                      October 7, 2003
                      766 Posts
                      Offline
                      Posted: August 19, 2006, 2:16 am - IP Logged

                      If gambling was a crime, there would be no horse and dog races, no casinos, no states' and country lotteries.

                      Gambling itself is not a crime, prostitution and illegal drug use are.

                      I mean here on the U.S.A. in some countries, prostitution and drug use might be or is legal, at least prostitution is.

                      As it was said: "If there is no victim there is no crime", after all, alcohol is a drug, but it is a legal drug here on the USA, it might not be on one or more countries, different people(s) have different morality, rules and laws.

                      Right(s) and wrong(s) are not the same to everybody.

                      What is a right to you, might be a wrong to somebody else.

                      And what is a wrong to you, might be a right to somebody else.

                      What might have been a right to a people at one time, might become a wrong at another time (In the future) and vice-versa.

                      And then there are things that are both right and wrong to the same people at the same time, like killing and gambling, for example: They are O.K. if they are done with the government or with their permission and not otherwise.

                      Here we have double standards.

                      Same with other illegal activities beside those like having monopolies, it is OK for the government to do and have, but not for anybody else.

                      Illegal activities become legal if the government does them, but only for the government, they are still illegal for anybody else to do, like having and running a lottery.

                      It is a case of:

                       Do as I say to do, but not as I do.

                      Morality is on the eye of the beholder or something like that, they say.

                      Go to Utah and have many wives and children with them, or go to San Francisco and marry your same sex "Friend", maybe not anymore.

                      Or go South and have black slaves, well, I guess this one is no more, now they are Mexican slaves instead and not just South either, but everywhere.

                      Have a nice weekend.

                      EXCALIBUR is no more that "Handle" is dead, gone.
                      Maybe sometime in the future I might come back as LANTERN again, but maybe not, if I don't come back as LANTERN in the future then I won't come back at all, but as I said there is no more EXCALIBUR.

                        Avatar
                        New Mexico
                        United States
                        Member #12305
                        March 10, 2005
                        2984 Posts
                        Offline
                        Posted: August 19, 2006, 10:27 am - IP Logged

                        If gambling was a crime, there would be no horse and dog races, no casinos, no states' and country lotteries.

                        Gambling itself is not a crime, prostitution and illegal drug use are.

                        I mean here on the U.S.A. in some countries, prostitution and drug use might be or is legal, at least prostitution is.

                        As it was said: "If there is no victim there is no crime", after all, alcohol is a drug, but it is a legal drug here on the USA, it might not be on one or more countries, different people(s) have different morality, rules and laws.

                        Right(s) and wrong(s) are not the same to everybody.

                        What is a right to you, might be a wrong to somebody else.

                        And what is a wrong to you, might be a right to somebody else.

                        What might have been a right to a people at one time, might become a wrong at another time (In the future) and vice-versa.

                        And then there are things that are both right and wrong to the same people at the same time, like killing and gambling, for example: They are O.K. if they are done with the government or with their permission and not otherwise.

                        Here we have double standards.

                        Same with other illegal activities beside those like having monopolies, it is OK for the government to do and have, but not for anybody else.

                        Illegal activities become legal if the government does them, but only for the government, they are still illegal for anybody else to do, like having and running a lottery.

                        It is a case of:

                         Do as I say to do, but not as I do.

                        Morality is on the eye of the beholder or something like that, they say.

                        Go to Utah and have many wives and children with them, or go to San Francisco and marry your same sex "Friend", maybe not anymore.

                        Or go South and have black slaves, well, I guess this one is no more, now they are Mexican slaves instead and not just South either, but everywhere.

                        Have a nice weekend.

                        As it was said: "If there is no victim there is no crime", after all, alcohol is a drug, but it is a legal drug here on the USA, it might not be on one or more countries, different people(s) have different morality, rules and laws.

                        Right(s) and wrong(s) are not the same to everybody.

                        What is a right to you, might be a wrong to somebody else.

                        And what is a wrong to you, might be a right to somebody else

                        Morality might be defined in a lot of ways.  Probably in the US the most common and universal definition is that morality is the avoidance of law-breaking, whatever the laws might be.

                        Legality's a different matter.  In times past legal thinkers within the US assumed criminal legality fell into tiers, or layers:

                        • Federal Statutes were confined within the powers and limitations granted and limited by the US Constitution.
                        • State criminal codes were limited by and confined within powers and limitations not granted to the Federal Government, but not forbidden by the Constitution.
                        • Local codes were limited to those not forbidden by the Constution, the Federal Statutes, State Statutes.

                        That's the reason prohibition of alcohol required an amendment to the US Constitution to allow the Federal Government to enforce it.  It's also the reason it continued to be enforced until that Constitutional amendment was repealed.

                        Otherwise, the only Constitutionally granted right (as opposed to the 'right' implied by overwhelming force) of the Federal Government to enforce such prohibitions lies in interstate commerce and traffic.

                        The problem with the Internet Gambling criminality is that the entire issue of Federal criminality's become a matter of nuance and questions over which powers other than those granted by the Constitution the Feds have granted themselves at any given moment.

                        Those powers it's granted itself cover a wide range of regulation and statutes allowing powers it's granted itself in one area, say, anti-terrorism, to spill over into enforcement of other powers it's given itself, say, forbidden drug possession (though that's actually only a small example).

                        The result is that, for instance, most illegal drugs aren't even named in statutes passed through Congress and signed by the President.  That authority's been delegated to the Food and Drug Administation.  People are spending time in prison for possessing chemical items elected representatives have never named in statute as Criminal.

                        Similarly, notice the indirect approaches to enforcement of the Internet Gambling issues in this story. 

                        Until Federal Statutes clearly define what is legal under the powers the Feds have granted themselves, and what is illegal, anything's up for grabs.  The only test for legality's in the act of doing it and seeing whether you're prosecuted for it.

                         now they are Mexican slaves instead and not just South either, but everywhere.

                         Slavery is a word that gets a lot of usage where it doesn't apply.  Slaves attempt to escape the condition of slavery whenever possible.  Slavery exists in a legal environment, or physical environment, where force is used to keep them from escaping. 

                        I've read of many isolated instances where Mexican and other laborers were held in bondage on ranches and in other remote places.  When those ranchers and other slave holders were discovered the slaves were released and the slaveholders prosecuted for kidnapping and other offenses.

                        In the US today the only slaves I'm aware of are people being held in prison facilities.  They work free, cannot move from whatever place they're directed to be, and they exist in an environment of constant physical, sexual and mental abuse.

                        The suggestion that Mexican workers who've struggled desparately to arrive here to work for wages and have to avoid law-enforcement to remain here are slaves does you no credit.

                        Jack

                        Absorb the good, ignore the bad, weigh the ugly.

                        It's about number behavior.

                        Egos don't count.

                         

                        Dedicated to the memory of Big Loooser

                         

                          Avatar
                          New Mexico
                          United States
                          Member #12305
                          March 10, 2005
                          2984 Posts
                          Offline
                          Posted: August 19, 2006, 11:02 am - IP Logged

                          By their own standards, those who use legality as the measure of morality should feel repelled by the entire issue of online gambling once it's passed by an Act of Congress and signed by the Prez.  They should applaud as they are, themselves, hauled off to the slammer for a few years if they're caught doing it.

                          By the same token, they should have no problem with pornography because it is evidently not illegal (immoral).  (Except in the instance of kiddie porn, which is both illegal and immoral and actively investigated and enforced by criminal prosecution where the Internet's involved.)

                          J

                          Absorb the good, ignore the bad, weigh the ugly.

                          It's about number behavior.

                          Egos don't count.

                           

                          Dedicated to the memory of Big Loooser

                           

                            Lurk More N00b's avatar - ummm
                            USA
                            United States
                            Member #3312
                            January 10, 2004
                            35 Posts
                            Offline
                            Posted: August 20, 2006, 1:29 pm - IP Logged

                            "You've all sat quietly by and tacitly consented while others have been jailed and robbed for doing things you didn't happen to do, but which acts also had no victims. Many of you have even applauded."

                            I'd like for you to clarify who you've included in this blanket statement. One finger pointing at me, three pointing back at you. Unless you are a life-long political activist, you can cram it with peanut butter, sunshine! Mad