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A Douglaston man and a man from Little Neck have been accused of being the ringleaders of a $30 million gambling ring in College Point, while five other men from the borough have been arrested on charges in the bust last week, the Nassau County district attorney said.
Brothers Stephen Rozich, 55, of Douglaston, and Daniel Rozich, 52, of Little Neck, were arrested at their homes on the morning of Nov. 10, Nassau DA Kathleen Rice said. The two men allegedly operated a College Point−based gambling operation that netted more than $30 million in illegal sports wagers during the past 10 years, she said.
Police arrested eight other men who allegedly helped to operate the gambling ring, including Jeffrey Dunn, 40, of Little Neck; Fred Levine, 59, of Flushing; Antonio Ambroselli, 46, of Whitestone; and George Rudzinski, 66, of Beechurst, Rice said. Police were still searching for James McDonnell, 70, of Bayside, who also allegedly took part in the operation, she said.
Other men arrested in the bust include Glen Cove’s Michael Donaghy, Farmingdale’s Douglas Leung and Williston Park’s Frank McDonnell, Rice said. Police had not yet apprehended Westbury’s Luis Castro, she said.
If convicted, all 11 men each face up to four years in prison, the DA said.
“Gambling rings cheat the tax system and skirt the rules we are all forced to live by,” Rice said.
From March to November, undercover detectives from Nassau County’s police department placed numerous bets with the betting ring, which was originally based in Flushing, but later moved to College Point, Rice said. Bettors would call a phone number and place their bets with the “wire room” or they would use Nassau and Suffolk county runners to collect their bets and place them with the operation, she said.
Police have identified Donaghy as the operation’s sheetwriter, who was responsible for recording bets and running the day−to−day operations of the scheme, Rice said. She said the investigation is ongoing and that police expect to make additional arrests.
The DA said that the Rozich brothers are believed to have been in the sports betting business for more than 25 years and that their Queens operation relied primarily on wagers for college and professional football games.
“Gambling on sports is not a victimless crime,” she said. “The multimillion−dollar profits these operations take in are not generally spent on tuition bills or charitable giving. It never ceases to amaze me the extent to which people will go to avoid an honest day’s work.”
Search warrants executed last week resulted in the seizure of $50,000 in cash, gambling records, four vehicles and gambling equipment, the DA said.
In addition, detectives raided the College Point wire room, where they seized a safety deposit box as well as raided the automobiles and homes of several alleged members of the gambling ring, Rice said.
Reach reporter Nathan Duke by e−mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 718−229−0300, Ext. 156.
©2008 Community Newspaper Group
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