Florida Sheriff Would like $1M+ Seized from Illegal Gambling Investigation

Posted on: December 25, 2021, 01:48h. 

Previous up to date on: December 25, 2021, 02:38h.

A sheriff in South Florida would like to retain far more than $1.2 million in hard cash, alongside with other merchandise. The bounty was seized earlier this yr for the duration of queries tied to an illegal bookmaking investigation that has nonetheless to deliver any felony rates.

Sheriff Gregory Tony
Broward County Sheriff Gregory Tony has submitted a petition in the Florida county’s courts to seize much more than $1.2 million in property by means of the state’s civil forfeiture regulations. Tony’s petition claims the cash and other property ended up element of an illegal gambling ring that’s below investigation. (Graphic: Florida Sheriffs Affiliation)

The South Florida Sunlight Sentinel documented Thursday that the Workplace of the Statewide Prosecutor has told 4 adult males they are beneath investigation. Whilst none at present have been indicted, court docket records display Broward County Sheriff Gregory Tony initially sought to seize the dollars on May possibly 7, 3 weeks after queries at four areas. The haul provided nine $1,000 poker chips and 25 gold cash with an approximated worth of additional than $44,000.

Tony then filed an amended petition on Aug. 23.

Like all other US states, Florida has civil forfeiture statutes that allow for law enforcement to retain assets taken during lookups or stops. According to FindLaw.com, Florida’s statute only demands that law enforcement verify “beyond a sensible question that the assets is linked to a crime.”

In accordance to an Orlando Sentinel posting, Florida law enforcement officials seized a lot more than $265 million in funds and own home in 2018. That was a lot more than any other point out in the place.

In accordance to the Institute for Justice, point out and federal law enforcement businesses have employed civil forfeiture legislation to assert much more than $68.8 billion, in accordance to the Institute for Justice.

Investigation Started Three Many years Ago

According to Tony’s petition, his office’s Arranged Criminal offense Unit acquired a suggestion from a Crime Stoppers connect with in December 2018. The concept was that a man named William Cascioli was part of a group managing an illegal gambling and dollars laundering ring in South Florida.

“The tipster even more suggested that users of the organization operate an illegal sports betting operation comprised of many companions and that the corporation receives hundreds of 1000’s of pounds in proceeds weekly,” the complaint said.

Right after the get in touch with, sheriff’s officers started to monitor Cascioli. For the duration of that time, the officers mentioned Cascioli held a number of conferences in Davie, a Broward County neighborhood. He was also located selecting up an unknown white male with a backpack from Terminal 3 of the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood Global Airport. The two drove off, but returned minutes later to the Terminal 1 departure building. There, the unknown male exited the auto with the backpack.

From the airport, the civil forfeiture petition claims officers noticed Cascioli go to a CVS Pharmacy, in which he acquired two Yahtzee board games. Fewer than an hour later, he went to a FedEx site to ship the Yahtzee games. One went to Texas and the other to California.

Though in line with the clerk, Cascioli was overheard using his mobile device communicating with an person he referred to as ‘Stevie Boy’ and speaking about the place spreads, odds on the Super Bowl, and horse racing,” the complaint states.

FedEx officials would open the containers as part of the company’s guidelines versus transport illegal contraband. They discovered much more than $200,000 in income in the two Yahtzee bins.

That revenue was sooner or later seized, and more investigation located that the unlawful bookmaking ring was allegedly widespread in Broward, Miami-Dade, Palm Beach, Collier, and Martin counties.

Civil Forfeiture Try Fought

The Broward County Sheriff’s Workplace also alleges the ring used a internet site, betbigcity.ag, to run its operation, with an account set up by Cascioli. The grievance states that 23 brokers of the ring had accounts, with 115 purchasers making use of the site.

This earlier April, the sheriff’s business submitted for lookup warrants for Cascioli’s Palm Beach County dwelling and for residences of a few other persons, Todd Schettino, Harris Steinhart, and Martin Zarcadoolas. Warrants have been also filed for accounts connected to Zarcadoolas, Cascioli, and Voehringer Realty LLC.

The sheriff’s petition alleges that Zarcadoolas was a higher-rating member of the organization, and accounts in his title had been made use of to “conceal the proceeds of their illegal bookmaking action.”

Among the property seized from Zarcadoolas included the gold coins and poker chips, as properly as more than $183,000 from a closet safe and sound at his residence. Law enforcement also confiscated quite a few digital devices, these types of as a MacBook, a Chromebook, iPads, and cell phones, and men’s Breitling, Cartier, and Rolex watches.

Financial institution seizures from Zarcadoolas included virtually $600,000 from an account at Chase Lender, and far more than $165,000 from a Bank of The us account.

Zarcadoolas has denied his involvement in the unlawful gambling ring. Court docket documents exhibit he has fought attempts to have his belongings seized by way of civil forfeiture.

“The seizing law enforcement company effectuated an unconstitutional look for of Zarcadoolas’ house in violation of the Fourth Amendment to the Florida Constitution and the United States Constitution,” Zarcadoolas’ reaction to the amended complaint states.