UPDATE: Illegal gambling ring suspect walks away with millions
ANADARKO, Okla. - An Oklahoma man accused in connection with an interstate illegal gambling ring is walking away with a lot of money.
In March 2013, Chase Burns of Anadarko was arrested.
Burns was accused of supplying illegal gaming software to outlets in Florida.
Authorities say the illegal activity was disguised as funds that were being donated to a veterans group.
The attorney general’s office in Oklahoma says very little, if any, funds were ever donated.
Assistant Attorney General Kristopher Jarvis said, “Today, the gambling ring is shutdown for good in Oklahoma.”
The case broke back in March of this year.
Jarvis said, “Chase Burns, through his companies and corporations here in the State of Oklahoma, helped to launder a lot of illegal gambling proceeds back into the state of Oklahoma.”
Back in March, the attorney general’s office took $7.7 million from Burns and those whom they call his co-conspirators.
The attorney general’s office believed the money was laundered proceeds.
Thursday, the attorney general’s office secured $3.5 million from those funds.
Jarvis said, “That $3.5 million is a rough estimation of what we could trace to his Florida activities.”
The attorney general’s office says the money will be used to stop others from engaging in similar activities in the future.
Jarvis said, “Most importantly we will use it to fight crime. That’s what this money is going to be earmarked for and it’s also going to help us develop our anti-money laundering activities here in the office.”
As for the other $4.2 million seized, that money goes back to Chase Burns.
Officials in Oklahoma were not able to tie the funds to illegal activity.
While Burns is still facing a court battle in Florida, his dealings with Oklahoma are now complete.
Unfortunately, the attorney general’s office says the real victims are those who Burns and his co-conspirators claimed the funds were going to, veterans.
Jarvis said, “That’s perhaps the saddest part of the case is Chase Burns, his companies and his co-conspirators in Florida will never help veterans that I know of.”
We did talk with Chase Burns’ attorney.
He tells us they are pleased to have this issue resolved with the State of Oklahoma and they are glad to be moving forward.