Eleven people were indicted in New York City for money laundering, fraud and gambling charges, announced federal law enforcement officials today. According to CNN Money, the arrests are part of a large crackdown on Internet poker.
The United States Attorney in New York released the 52-page indictment that included the names of all 11 people, three of whom are the founders of Full Tilt Poker, Absolute Poker and PokerStars.
The indictment targeted the poker websites that earned millions of dollars from American users. The revenues the overseas companies made were then disguised as online purchases.
It's also been alleged that the indicted used these illegal practices to avoid U.S. anti-gambling laws.
The authorities presented restraining orders to more than 75 bank accounts, while also seizing the five internet domain names employed by the various companies to host their illegal games.
Federal law enforcement officals also stated that the companies allegedly planned for the money from the U.S. players to be hidden as payments to hundreds of fake online merchants for the purchase of random merchandise.
U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara released a statement today, saying:
"As charged, these defendants concocted an elaborate criminal fraud scheme, alternately tricking some U.S. banks and effectively bribing others to assure the continued flow of billions in illegal gambling profits."