The United States federal government has arrested 34 people and indicted 23 business entities on the charges of operating an illegal sports betting ring.
The charges stem from the defendants' association with the popular sports book Legendz Sports and were filed through a grand jury that was based in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.
The federal government is alleging that the group collectively processed more than $1 billion in illegal bets over the years. The collective investigation was a work of cooperation between the Department of Justice, FBI, and IRS.
Speaking about the charges U.S. Acting Assistant Attorney General Mythili Raman said, "“These defendants allegedly participated in an illegal sports gambling business, lining their pockets with profits from over a billion dollars in illegal gambling proceeds."
“The current charges demonstrate that we are as determined as ever to hold accountable those involved in facilitating illegal online gambling by U.S. citizens, regardless of where the business operates, or where the defendants reside.”
The government alleges that the betting system worked internationally, involving betting operations based in Costa Rica and Panama. If convicted each of the defendants face up to 20 years in federal prison for racketeering, 20 years for conspiracy to commit money laundering, 10 years for money laundering, and five years for operating an illegal betting business.
Along with jail time, the federal government is seeking the forfeiture of banking accounts, various real estate pieces, and an aircraft connected to the business.