Federal Authorities Investigate Illegal Online Gambling Operation In South Carolina

This story was published more than 12 years ago.

The Secret Service and US Attorney's Office interviewed online gamblers who reside in South Carolina's Greenville County, media reports claim.

The investigation revolves around an alleged online poker ring, which authorities claim was being used to launder more than $40 million per year and included two offshore companies.

The two offshore companies, Prime Investment Ltd. and Trading 24/7 Ltd. reportedly acted as a front for the money laundering, which violates the UIGEA. In a raid, authorities seized in excess of $2 million, of which $700,000 was given to the Greenville Sheriff's Office.

Bill Watkins, Assistant U.S. Attorney commented on the case saying: "We're looking at this from a global picture. It's about the integrity of our financial system. Individuals laundering money, sending much of that money into the United States, and hiding the source of it. Now, we've got their money."

"We determined, thanks to their (Sheriff's office) efforts, that this was gambling money and we could not find any legitimate source of business for these companies."

U.S. Attorney Bill Nettles said that the government is not focusing on prosecuting online gamblers, but to shut down the illegal operators. He also said no arrests have been made, as the major crimes were committed by offshore companies.

Speaking out about the integrity of the security of US Banks and currency, Nettles said: "Using relationships with foreign banks, these two companies were engaging in dubious business activities. "When you certify that something is true, whether it has to do with your mortgage or your loan or where the money is coming from, if you lie about it, that's a federal offense."