10/12/2012 : LARGEST ONLINE GAMBLING BUST IN ISRAELI HISTORY
$1 Billion handled over the past two years
Israeli authorities brought down what has been described as the biggest gambling network in Israel's history this week following a multi-authority year-long undercover investigation.
In a massive operation, Police authorities raided dozens of locations that included the homes of forty suspects, who were taken in for questioning, and money exchange kiosks in Tel Aviv, Holon, Herzliya and Rishon Lezion where
The Times of Israel reports an Israeli-focused betting site DonBet.com at the center of the investigation which has allegedly handled at least 1 billion dollars in the past two years and $6 to 7 Billion over the past five years. The website offered extensive betting operations on soccer games, horse racing and blackjack. Some of its servers were reportedly located in Israel and the Netherlands.
DonBet was targeted by Police who traced the origin of "tens of millions of dollars" obtained through illegal gambling operations by criminal gangs in central Israel. Police described the website as "a growth engine that is suspected of financing criminal gangs in Israel".
Authorities operating in a joint effort in the investigation included income tax investigators, tax authorities and money laundering investigators.
The suspects, who are accused of money laundering, gambling, criminal conspiracy, and violations of the Combating Criminal Organizations Law (5763-2003), are scheduled to appear before a Tel Aviv District Court where Police will request they be remanded.
"There is no doubt that the investigation could damage an important means of financing for top criminals in Israel, and the state could make tens of millions of shekels from the seizures," said a Police spokesperson.