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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of West Virginia

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Goodwin Charges West Logan Restaurant Owner With Laundering Money Derived From Illegal Gambling Operation

IRS Seizes Over Eighty Illegal Gray Machines from South Williamson, Kentucky Gambling Parlor

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – U.S. Attorney Booth Goodwin filed charges today against a West Logan restaurant owner for laundering cash proceeds of an illegal gambling operation.  Since May of 2008, Gregory A. Dotson, 51, of Chapmanville and the proprietor of Giovani’s of Logan in West Logan, operated an illegal poker machine gambling parlor in the back of a tobacco store in South Williamson, Kentucky.  Although payouts from poker machines, often referred to as “gray” machines, are illegal under Kentucky law, Dotson routinely paid out gambling winnings to patrons.  Dotson retrieved the proceeds from the illegal gambling operation weekly and brought the cash across state lines to his office at Giovanni’s.  Dotson then commingled the cash from his legitimate business with his illegal enterprise.

On August 16, 2010, Dotson traveled from West Virginia to Bristol, Tennessee with nearly $12,000 of cash proceeds from the illegal gambling operation and used those funds to help purchase a 2009 Nissan 350z sports car. 

In October of 2013, agents from the Internal Revenue Service raided the gambling parlor, and seized forty machines in operation and another forty machines in storage.

The information filed today alleges that the United States intends to forfeit nearly $150,000 in cash, a $96,000 Mercedes sport-utility vehicle, a $50,000 Rolex watch, several expensive firearms, in addition to the eighty gray machines seized from the South Williamson operation. 

In addition to the forfeiture, Dotson faces up to ten years in prison a $250,000 fine if convicted.

The investigation was conducted by the Internal Revenue Service with assistance from the Federal Bureau of Investigation.  Assistant United States Attorney Thomas Ryan is in charge of the prosecutions. 

Updated January 7, 2015