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Grand Jury Charges Kankakee Business Owner with Operating Illegal Gambling Business, Money Laundering

December 7, 2011

Urbana, Ill. – A federal grand jury has returned an indictment that charges Kankakee business owner Jack L. Jenkins with operating an illegal gambling business and money laundering, as announced by U.S. Attorney Jim Lewis, Central District of Illinois.

From August 2009 to January 2011, the indictment alleges that Jenkins, 69, owner of Sue’s Tobacco Outlet, Inc., doing business as Sue’s Tobacco Mart, managed an illegal gambling business that provided and maintained video gambling machines and devices in violation of Illinois law. According to the indictment, the business generated a gross revenue of more than $2,000 in any single day.

The indictment further charges Jenkins with one count of money laundering related to the purchase of video gambling machines from LaCost Amusements, Inc. According to the indictment, on Feb. 26, 2010, following the federal indictment of LaCost Amusements, Jenkins entered into an installment sale and security agreement with LaCost Amusements. In the agreement, Jenkins’ company allegedly agreed to purchase 22 video gambling machines for a total of $110,000, as well as to pay $500 per week to LaCost Amusements Inc. for maintenance, service, and parts.

According to the indictment, from Mar. 8, 2010, to Jan. 24, 2011, Sue’s Tobacco made 45 payments to LaCost Amusements totaling $136,000. The payments allegedly involved the proceeds of an unlawful activity, that is conducting and owning an illegal gambling business, with the intent to promote the carrying on of the business and knowing that the property involved in the financial transaction represented proceeds of the illegal gambling business.

A summons will be issued by the U.S. Clerk of the Court for Jenkins to appear in federal court in Urbana for arraignment on a date to be determined by the Clerk.
If convicted, the offense of illegal gambling carries a statutory penalty of up to five years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000; the offense of money laundering is punishable by up to 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $500,000 or twice the value of the property involved in the transaction.

The charge is the result of an ongoing investigation by the Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation Division. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Eugene L. Miller.

Members of the public are reminded that an indictment is merely an accusation; the defendant is presumed innocent unless proven guilty.

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