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8 convicted of $5.2 million fraud at Florida casino

Posted at 6:31 AM, Feb 05, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-05 07:13:28-05

MIAMI (AP) — Four former South Florida casino employees and their wives have been convicted of stealing $5.2 million from the business over several years.

The U.S. Attorney's Office in Miami announced Tuesday that Michel Aleu, Lester Lavin, Yohander Jorrin Melhen and Leonardo Betancourt have pleaded guilty to conspiracy to steal funds in excess of $1,000 from Miccosukee Gaming, conspiracy to commit computer fraud and money laundering conspiracy. Their respective wives, Maria Del Pilar Aleu, Yusmary Shirley Duran, Anisleydi Vergel Hermida, and Milagros Marile Acosta Torres, have pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit money laundering offenses. All eight await sentencing.

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According to federal court documents, the men worked in the casino's video game department. From January 2011 to May 2015, they tampered with computers in electronic gaming machines, causing those machines to generate false and fraudulent credit vouchers or tickets. They then enlisted others to exchange the vouchers for cash at the casino. The money was turned over to the employees' wives, who moved the cash between multiple bank accounts.

The couples used the stolen funds to buy homes, investment properties, vehicles, boats, vacations and Florida Prepaid College Plans for certain of their children.