Tuesday September 2,2014 : ONLINE SPORTS BETTING OPERATOR ENTERS GUILTY PLEA
Play Fast Sports website allegedly took in tens of millions in wagers.
Federal prosecutors in Colorado have released details of another extensive FBI investigation and subsequent shuttering of an online sports betting operator.
The investigation centred on an operation run by Kerwin Sande from 2006 to 2013 which used the Costa Rica website Play Fast Sports.com and accepted "tens of millions of dollars" in bets across state lines.
Sande has entered a guilty plea on charges of money laundering and running an illegal gambling business which involved a number of unidentified high profile punters from the Denver area, apparently recruited from prestigious golf clubs in the region.
Many of the wagers were allegedly transacted in cash, and prosecutors have revealed that one of Sande’s methods of delivering wins to bettors was to secrete hundred-dollar bills within sealed golfing magazines which were then delivered to the recipients.
Sande's activities extended across Colorado, Arizona, Oklahoma and California, with most of the betting action on pro and college football and other major US sports, with online blackjack available and used by some of the site’s customers.
Sande’s plea deal includes an agreement to a forfeiture of more than $3.1 million in personal assets that include a Denver-area home valued at $1.6 million.
Federal agents have also seized other assets such as six luxury cars and nine motorcycles, which will be added to the forfeiture, along with $600,000 in cash that Sande had distributed among almost a dozen different accounts with five different banks.
The six autos were two late-model Corvettes, two BMWs, a Mercedes and a Porsche Cayenne, while the motorcycles were exclusively top-end Harley-Davidson and Ducati models.
Big money changed hands in the Play Fast Sports operation, with one high-roller admitting to FBI agents that he had lost between $2 and $5 million, while four others acknowledged action involving hundreds of thousands of dollars’ worth of individual wagers.
Prosecutors cited Sande’s lack of a previous criminal history and cooperation with prosecutors in recommending a jail sentence to the presiding judge of not more than 15 months.