States Attorney's Office District of Connecticut
|April 7, 2010|
FORMER MOHEGAN SUN CARD DEALER SENTENCED TO PRISON FOR INVOLVEMENT IN CHEATING CONSPIRACY
Nora R. Dannehy, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced that JESUS RODRIGUEZ, 40, of Grove Avenue, Groton, was sentenced today by United States District Judge Mark R. Kravitz in New Haven to two months of imprisonment, followed by three years of supervised release, for his involvement in a sophisticated card cheating scheme that victimized numerous North American casinos, including Mohegan Sun in Connecticut. RODRIGUEZ also must perform 150 hours of community service during his term of supervised release. On January 14, 2010, RODRIGUEZ pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy stemming from the scheme.
According to court documents and statements made in court, in 2005, while employed as a card dealer at Mohegan Sun Casino, RODRIGUEZ participated in a scheme to cheat at gambling at the casino. Through this scheme, RODRIGUEZ helped a criminal organization, referred to as the “Tran Organization,” which was based in San Diego, California, steal more than $100,000 by cheating at blackjack and mini-baccarat at the casino.
In pleading guilty, RODRIGUEZ admitted that performed “false shuffles” at the direction of other co-conspirators. Through this false shuffle scheme, a co-conspirator tracked the order of cards as they were legitimately played and then RODRIGUEZ, who was bribed or had been promised a bribe, performed a false shuffle. After the false shuffle created a “slug” of un-shuffled cards, a co-conspirator tracked the order of cards until the slug reappeared in the cards as they were being dealt. A co-conspirator then signaled to other co-conspirators as to how to bet on the subsequent hands in order to cheat the casino out of its funds.
Today, Judge Kravitz ordered RODRIGUEZ to pay, jointly and severally with other members of the conspiracy, $126,600 in restitution to the Mohegan Sun.
More than 30 individuals, including RODRIGUEZ, were charged in the Southern District of California as a result of this investigation, which was led by the Department of Justice Criminal Division’s Organized Crime and Racketeering Section (OCRS). The cheating schemes occurred at more than two dozen casinos in the United States and Canada.
The parties agreed to transfer the RODRIGUEZ case to the District of Connecticut for further prosecution.
This matter has been investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s San Diego Field Office; the Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigation Division; the San Diego Sheriff’s Department; and the California Department of Justice’s Bureau of Gambling Control. The investigation also has received assistance from several additional federal, state, tribal and foreign authorities. This matter was prosecuted in the District of Connecticut by Assistant United States Attorney Michael S. McGarry.
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