David Carruthers, the ex-CEO of BetonSports plc still languishing under house arrest in St. Louis, is not the only one awaiting trial on federal charges related to the operations of the now defunct online gambling group – the founder of the company, Gary Kaplan, remains in custody, too following his arrest and extradition from Dominica some ten months ago.
This week, the New York Post reported that a federal judge recommended the federal authorities drop tax evasion and obstruction charges against Kaplan, the imprisoned founder of the bankrupt British online gambling company. However, Kaplan (49) would still face charges of conspiracy and violating US Internet-gambling laws.
Kaplan had argued that he did not violate tax laws because “no wagering excise tax was owed by him because the wagers either were not accepted in the Unites States or were not placed by a person who was in the United States”.
The defence document asserted that questions of venue in criminal cases are not merely matters of former legal procedure. They raise deep issues of public policy.
In answer, the prosecution claimed that the defendant was subject to the wagering excise tax pursuant to defendant’s status as owner and operator of various specified gambling entities doing business in the United States.
However, the court found “the defendant’s arguments persuasive”.
In late 2007 Kaplan lost a court bid to be released on bail, claiming ill health.
In another attempt to secure bail this week, Federal judge Jackson said: "There is no condition or combination of conditions of release that would reasonably assure the defendant's appearance."
The directors of BetonSports, a one time major London-based online gambling company, pleaded guilty May 24 last year to a single racketeering conspiracy charge and agreed to cooperate with prosecutors by furnishing evidence against Kaplan and 11 co-defendants, including David Carruthers. All of the individual defendants have pleaded not guilty and still await trial.
Kaplan previously offered to pay for a private security detail to guard him and wear electronic monitoring equipment.
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