Vadim Trincher, Sons Illya and Eugene Reach Plea Deals in New York Gambling Prosecutions

scales-justiceFive more plea deals have been announced this week in the major New York City-based sportsbetting and poker ring, including deals for father Vadim Trincher and sons Illya and Eugene Trincher.  Vadim, a one-time World Poker Tour winner at the Borgata, was one of the central figures in the case.

The deals for Vadim and Eugene Trincher and billionaire art dealer Hillel “Helly” Nehmad were announced on Thursday by the Southern District of New York (SDNY) Department of Justice office, while the deals for son Illya (also spelled Ilya) and another defendant, Anatoly Golubchik, were announced today.

The four latest plea deals swell to 18 the number of defendants among 34 charged who have settled out of court to date.  At least one, alleged Russian mobster and international crime boss Alimzhan “Taiwanchik” Tokhtakhounov, remains outside US jurisdiction.  Tokhtakhounov is alleged to have exercised control over three interconnected rings involved in the crackdown last spring, including the most important, along with Vadim Trncher, termed the Taiwanchik-Trincher Organization.

Though centered in New York City and based primarily on land-based sportsbetting charges, the groups’ activities also included Internet-based sportsbetting, plus high-stakes poker games on both American coasts.  In additional to gambling-related offenses, the more serious charges included money laundering, racketeering and extortion.

Vadim Trincher, who faced several of the more severe charges, still could face a maximum prison term of 20 years plus three years of supervised release when sentenced next March, though a period of around two years is likely according to other published reports.  Vadim also agreed to forfeit cash and property worth more than $20 million, according to an SDNY presser, which is believed to include the posh Trump Towers penthouse apartment — valued at $8 million or so — where regular high-stakes were hosted by Trincher.

Vadim’s son Eugene, who faced relatively minor charges compared to those made against his father and brother, faces a possible five-year prison term (and also the three-year supervised release follow-up), but will likely receive a much shorter term, probably a maximum of six months to a year and as little as probation or time served.  Eugene also agreed to forfeit an unspecified sum that was declared to be the proceeds of his gambling activities.  Eugene will also be formally sentenced next March.

Vadim’s son Ilya, who faced several charges connected to the operation of one of the larger group’s sportsbetting rings, also faces the possibility of five years in prison plus three years of supervised release, but will likely receive a term commensurate or just slightly longer than that given to Eugene.  Ilya also agreed to a significant forfeiture of roughly $6 million in cash and property, plus a 2012 Porsche Cayenne, as part of the deal.  As with the others, Ilya’s formal sentencing will be in March of 2014.

The other defendants who pled guilty this week, Helly Nehmad and Anatoly Golubchik, are likely to receive similar sentences.  Nehmad agreed to forfeit $6 million in cash and an unspecified painting seized as part of the initial operation’s sweep of defendants.  Given that Nehmad is an international art dealer from a family worth billions, proceeds of the sale of the artwork could put several more millions in the DOJ coffers.

Golubchik, who like Vadim Trincher faced several of the more serious charges, also agreed to a massive $20 million forfeiture, in addition to facing the same 20-year maximum term as Vadim.  Collectively, the sweep against the high-stakes gambling ring has brought plenty of forfeited funds and property the DOJ’s way; according to the latest release, “The defendants who have pled to date have agreed to forfeit, in total, more than $66,000,000.00.”

That’s with slightly more than half — 18 of 33 arraigned defendants — who have pled out so far, suggesting that this will turn out to be a nine-digit haul for the DOJ’s SDNY office.


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