FBI Nabs Russian Mob that Hacked Casino Slots and Stole Five Tons of Chocolate
A gang of sweet-toothed, casino slot-machine-hacking Russian mobsters was busted by the FBI in New York on Wednesday, its members charged with running a sprawling crime empire.
The Russian criminal gang arrested in nyc ended up being behind a ‘dizzying array of criminal schemes’ including the trafficking and theft greater than five tons of chocolate.
The outfit allegedly engaged in racketeering, narcotics, firearms offenses and murder-for-hire, as well as the theft and trafficking of over five tons of illegal chocolate into the United States, according to the indictment in addition to casino fraud.
Thirty-three alleged members of the so-called ‘Shulaya Enterprise’ are now actually under arrest, as part of a joint investigation between the FBI, Customs and Border Protection, and the New York Police Department. The majority were detained in the Brooklyn area.
‘The dizzying array of criminal schemes committed by this crime that is organized allegedly add a murder-for-hire conspiracy, a plot to rob victims by seducing and drugging them with chloroform, the theft of cargo shipments containing over 10,000 pounds of chocolate, and a fraud on casino slot machines using electronic hacking products,’ said Acting Manhattan US Attorney Joon Kim.
Illegal Poker Den
In line with the indictment, Razhden Shulaya, 40, of New Jersey, and Zurab Dzhanashvili, 37, of Brooklyn, the alleged ringleaders of the procedure, were among those arrested. Those two men were also charged with running an illegal poker den in Brighton Beach.
It is not understood if the syndicate that is chocoholic casino operation is linked up to a sophisticated slots hacking scheme uncovered in June 2014 at the Lumiere Palace in St Louis.
After an amount that is suspicious of at a handful regarding the Lumerie’s slots, surveillance cameras spotted Russian national Murat Bliev playing the machines while covertly holding his phone up to the screen.
Investigators suspected Bliev ended up being information that is streaming his phone to a ‘wire space,’ where scammers, who had somehow discovered a method to crack the seed of the random number generators, would send signals to its foot soldiers on when to receive optimal payouts.
Bliev’s arrest and subsequent confession, as he tried to re-enter the united states later in the entire year, unveiled a sophisticated operation that might have been scamming gambling enterprises within the US and around the planet for the better part of a decade, and is still believed to be in operation.
But while that syndicate is considered to be based out of St Petersburg, Russia, our alleged choc-smugglers are mostly Brooklyn-based Russian and Georgian criminals.
Nevertheless, with the arrest of Razhden Shulaya, the FBI is looking to bring the first ever racketeering that is federal against a so-called Russian ‘vor.’
Japan Casino Bill Expected to Implement Stringent Safeguards to Combat Problem Gambling
The Japan casino law currently being drafted within the nation’s legislative body is rumored to be emphasizing the most effective ways to avoid possible issue gambling that might arise from the commercial integrated resorts.
Though tensions haven’t flared in the National Diet over the Japan casino bill just as much as they did in 2015 when this fight broke away, the large legislature is reportedly wrestling with various components of legalized gambling. (Image: Limimasa Mayama/EPA)
Japan approved a bill to get rid of commercial gaming prohibition last December, with the stipulation that the National Diet, its version of congress, would develop an additional, more comprehensive package in 2017. The document that is wide-reaching anticipated to be revealed into the coming months.
The word emanating from the Diet is that combatting problem gambling is of utmost importance as the 717 members of the House of Representatives and House of Councilors labor over the integrated resorts (IR) bill.
The issue is even greater, according to the political rumor mill on the heels of a deadly casino attack in Manila that left 37 dead, carried out by a man with a severe gambling addiction. The dietary plan happens to be reportedly considering a measure that is separate would entirely focus on addiction safeguards.
Though gambling has been prohibited for decades in Japan, in addition to parimutuel wagering, 1000s of pachinko parlors have operated in a legal gray area for years. The pinball that is upright have low stakes, however, whereas the resort gambling enterprises will definitely not.
Casino Entrance Fees
In accordance with Bloomberg, Japan’s lawmakers searching for to help make the IRs for white collar workers and travelers who’ve the methods to gamble. The goal for the nagging problem gambling bill is to block anyone who can not afford to lose.
To do that, entrance charges are likely to be positioned on Japanese citizens trying to gain access to the casinos.
Though it’s mainly speculation at this time, it is thought that the National Diet is considering tolls that are imposing much as $100 per check out on each resident. a yearly pass might also be offered, though again, no particular rate is currently known.
Forcing Japanese gamblers to cover $100 in order to get on the floor would theoretically keep the vast bulk of middle and reduced classes away.
The dietary plan sees that as the logical step that is first preventing bankruptcy because of gambling addiction, and potentially, a horrific attack like the one that took place in Manila.
From domestic organizations Las vegas, nevada Sands, MGM, and Wynn, to foreign players like Melco, Genting, Galaxy, and SJM Holdings, the world’s biggest casino conglomerates are all attempting to enter the Japan casino industry.
One corporation whose odds have likely suffered this week is Universal Entertainment. The slots manufacturer and owner of Okada Manila, a $2.4 billion casino resort within the Philippines, confirmed this week that its CEO, billionaire Kazuo Okada, is under investigation for allegedly making an improper loan of $17.31 million to an unnamed 3rd party with business funds.
Roughly $12 million of the money reportedly went up to a holdings company controlled by Okada and their son.
Japan is expected to initially issue two IR licenses, and will be searching for stable candidates that have proven track records building and managing large-scale resorts. Las Vegas Sands, billionaire Sheldon Adelson’s empire, is thought to be the favorite that is early.
Innovative Slot Machines Targeting Millennials Fall Short, Professional Says
Skill-based slot machines are extremely popular in the gaming industry in 2017, however the products that are new thought to be innovative concepts by some casino executives, will not do much to attract the millennial, one expert opines.
Skill-based gaming, video gambling machines, whatever. Strategist Rob Tercek says they’re all still basically slot machines, and that will do little to attract millennials. (Image: Patrick Connolly/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
The American Gaming Association (AGA) and PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) recently hosted a conference that is one-day Wynn Encore in Las Vegas. The meeting focused on styles and innovation in gaming, and which technologies that are disruptive the best chances of shaping the future of the casino floor.
Keynote speaker Rob Tercek, who consults with executives in several industries on strategic initiatives, says regarding creating the casino for the future, the industry is seriously lacking.
He opined that the games on smart phones find a way to provide a much more experience that is entertaining slot and skill-based gambling machines entirely on Las Vegas floors.
‘When you compare mobile games to your casino games, the casino games disappoint,’ Tercek stated, as reported by the Las Las Vegas Review-Journal. ‘Players are actually trained to play by having a touchscreen or with augmented truth or virtual reality. For them, it (slots) appears like a thing that was designed in the Soviet Union in the mid-1980s.’
Time and energy to Make Slots History?
Tercek doesn’t appear to be a big fan of slot machines, at minimum for moving forward. He correctly pointed out that the reels featuring the cherries, bars, and bells dates right back to the 1880s.
The fundamental concept is still the same: put in your coins, spin the reels, and test your luck though the machines that litter casino floors today are now mostly fully electronic, with new sounds and visuals. ‘When millennials walk through the gambling enterprises floor, what it’s saying is, ‘This just isn’t for you. It is an artifact from a bygone era.”
Gaming manufacturers are rushing to develop a slot format that will impress to younger audiences. But they are nevertheless heavily depending on the tired yet proven reel concept.
Instance in point, Scientific Games, one of the gambling products that are largest manufacturers in the US. This week, it unveiled its first ‘slot machine with a skill-based bonus,’ saying its ‘development team worked diligently’ to make ‘certain that players are likely to be captivated with this compelling new game.’
Not just does the Scientific Games ‘innovative’ product still utilize reels, it is also based upon Space Invaders, a game that is arcade debuted in 1978.
Slots Stay, for Now
Though the future of gambling might not be slots, the fact associated with matter is the machines today still create the most of a floor’s revenue. Going away from the moneymakers as Tercek suggests is simpler said than done.
Over the last 12 months, slot machines have created $7.26 billion in revenue across Nevada. That is about 64 percent of the money that is total by casinos.
Significantly surprisingly, is the fact that percentage of total video gaming win represented by slots hasn’t changed much over the final 30 years. Probably the concern over the reels losing their muster is unwarranted.
Gaming Billionaire Kazuo Okada’s Own Company Is Investigating Him for Possible Fraud
Japanese video gaming mogul Kazuo Okada is being investigated by his very own business for potential fraudulence.
Kazuo Okada is suspected of transferring $17.3 million from Universal Entertainment accounts to a party that is unknown from where it was transferred into a different business he owned. (Image: Japan Everyday Press)
Universal Entertainment, the Tokyo-based slots and pachinko maker, revealed final week, in a message from its president posted regarding the company site, that Universal had established ‘a special investigation committee consisting of external experts’ to audit a suspicious $17.3 million transaction that Okada, the business’s founder and CEO, has not been able to explain.
Shares of Universal dipped significantly more than 6 percent on the Tokyo inventory Exchange Friday morning on news of the internal research.
The potential fraud supplied the latest addition to a cloud of impropriety hovering over Okada, who recently opened the $2.4 billion Okada Manila casino resort in the Philippines. He additionally is associated with a continuous battle that is legal Las Vegas with fellow billionaire Steve Wynn, his former friend and business partner, and is reportedly the main topic of an external investigation being conducted by the FBI.
Dubious Money Transfer
In an are accountable to the JASDAQ Securities Exchange, Universal acknowledged it had uncovered possible ‘fraudulent acts’ connected to a $17.3 million transaction.
‘There is a suspicion that certain directors illegally outflowed more or less 2 billion yen without going through proper internal decision making process [sic],’ reads a statement in regards to the report.
Based on the declaration, much among these funds had been subsequently moved to Okada Holdings Limited ‘to achieve benefit that is personal Chairman Okada.’
The deal in question was carried out by Okada and another director, Yoshinao Negishi, both of who were booted from Universal’s board at the organization’s annual general meeting earlier in June.
Okada, 73, is one of the richest males in Japan and a former stakeholder that is major Wynn Resorts. His ties with Steve Wynn return back to an initial investment of $455 million to help finance Wynn Las Vegas and Wynn Macau, for which he received a 20 percent stake in Wynn Resorts.
But Okada could be ousted as a director of Wynn Resorts in 2012 on the belief he bribed gaming that is philippine to secure a license for a house that eventually became the Okada Manila.
Wynn sued Okada, accusing his friend that is former of Wynn Resorts’ licenses around the planet. Okada promptly sued him back for defamation. The litigation is ongoing in A las vegas, nevada court.
Separate through the civil lawsuits and Universal audit, Okada remains a subject of FBI inquiry over a $40 million payment to a consultant in Manila this season in feasible violation of US laws that are anti-bribery.
Puerto Rico Casinos Could Benefit Should American Statehood Materialize, But Still a Long Shot
Puerto Rico, like numerous tourist destinations with balmy temperatures, has very long offered casinos as an appeal to visitors. But an economy that is currently in shambles has affected the island nation’s gaming industry, and on Sunday, Puerto Ricans voted emphatically for statehood, although an even more number that is emphatic at house.
Puerto Rico’s voters (at least people who switched out) resoundingly said ‘yes’ via referendum on Sunday to becoming the 51st US state. The island’s casino industry hopes the move could function as the pot of gold it’s been lacking, but hurdles that are many. (Image: trip advisor.com)
Ninety-seven percent of those who chose to vote favored the unincorporated US territory learning to be a full-fledged member of the union as the 51st state, however some 77 per cent regarding the populace chose to disregard the referendum altogether.
Anti-statehood opposition parties officially boycotted the referendum on the grounds it was ‘rigged’ in favor of statehood, approximately they claim. Nevertheless, according to the ruling Partido Nuevo Progresista (PNP) party, the social individuals have spoken.
‘This result is ample to take to Washington and urge Congress to accomplish the right thing,’ Luis Rivera Marín, PNP secretary of state, told great britain’s Guardian, denouncing the boycott of the referendum as ‘a sham.’
‘In the democratic procedure there is no such thing as a boycott,’ he said. ‘In this system, in the event that you don’t vote, you do not count.’
Casino Industry Hit Hard
Puerto Rico has been gripped by an enervating recession over the decade that is past which has affected its once thriving tourism and casino industries both. The island has 12 main gambling enterprises, most of which are based inside resort properties, but a handful have closed down in recent years.
Lately, the El San Juan Hotel announced it wouldn’t be reopening its casino facilities following an extensive renovation in February, due to ‘challenging financial and industry dynamics,’ in the future, hotel executives said although it may choose to reopen it.
It is not merely the recession that is presenting challenges to the area’s gaming sector. Increased competition from emerging casino that is regional across the United States has diminished Puerto Rico’s importance being a gambling destination for People in the us. There’s more rivalry from within as well, with clandestine businesses purveying unlicensed and untaxed slot machines springing up in the last few years over the island.
Meanwhile, Puerto Rico’s licensing regime is in dire need of reform. An onerous revenue-based tax on slots has exploded more punitive as industry volume decreases. Gambling reforms happen proposed, but have stalled in the legislature.
The PNP believes that joining the United States on equal terms would bring in funding that is extra would assist to drag the area out of recession. But for many Puerto Ricans, statehood has its drawbacks.
Greater Costs, But Lower Taxes
Currently, residents of the island are only required to pay income that is federal on money gained on the usa mainland. With meals currently 22 % more expensive than in the continental United States, and public solutions 64 % higher, additional taxes will be a burden on a struggling populace.
Meanwhile, many corporations that are foreign on the island, that also pay higher fees now, would likely relocate.
Numerous Puerto Ricans opposed Sunday’s referendum on the grounds so it would cost millions and would likely achieve almost no.
In a comparable referendum in 2012, 61 per cent of those who voted had been in favor of statehood, having a greater voter turnout, but no action ended up being taken by Congress to forward the measure that is complex.
Bacterial Disease Legionnaires Infects Guests at World Series of Poker Host Resort
The bacterial disease Legionnaires has been found inside a warm water heating system at the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas.
Two visitors staying at the Rio, which will be currently hosting the global World number of Poker, have actually fallen ill to Legionnaires’ disease. (Image: Casino.org)
Currently hosting the 48th World group of Poker (WSOP), wellness officials tested water heaters at the property that is caesars-owned two visitors who stayed at the resort on different occasions reported infections. One system was found to be contaminated with the bacterium, and casino games win real money the resort is presently disinfecting the boiler furnace and its pipes.
According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), Legionnaires’ disease is a form of germs that arises in freshwater environments such as lakes and streams. It becomes a risk when it spreads into human-made water systems like showers and faucets, cooling towers, hot tubs, and systems that are plumbing.
Legionnaires is usually easily controlled with antibiotics. However, cigarette smokers, and those with preexisting conditions like chronic lung disease and cancers, have reached threat of death due to problems.
In a statement, Caesars Entertainment said, ‘The business is working closely with the Southern Nevada Health District and taking remediation that is aggressive to ensure the safety of Rio’s water.’
Symptoms of Legionnaires’ illness includes coughing, shortness of breath, fever, muscle aches, and headaches. The WSOP has continued uninterrupted, with the $10,000 Main Event planned to put cards in the air on July 8.