Author: Leona Turner
Blackburn striker Diouf was charged with wounding with intent when he appeared in court in Senegal last Friday. John Williams, Club chairman, was still trying last night to verify the story after the Daily Express told him of the charges.
Diouf, received a three-month suspended prison term when found guilty of a similar charge in 2006, but this time he faces a potential two-year sentence, if the case comes to trial at Dakar’s district court.
Blackburn had given Diouf permission to travel to Senegal to attend a benefit concert for the Haiti earthquake victims, which was personally requested by the president of the country. However, he was charged in relation to an incident alleged to have happened at 6am on June 28, 2009 at the Casino du Cap Vert at coastal Almadies.
On July 2 last year, local woman Khady Sy told police the player had beaten her up in a fight in the casino, with another man Cheik Sadibou Boye – a professional wrestler who heads up Diouf’s security team – also allegedly involved.
Sy had a doctor’s certificate stating she was too badly injured to work for 20 days. Diouf escaped jail after the 2006 incident when he attacked Aicha Ba, ex-wife of his former international and club team-mate Khalilou Fadiga, and pleaded guilty to assault in the UK after being accused of spitting at Celtic fans in 2003.
Authorities in Augusta, Georgia closed out 2009 with the focus still on illegal gambling. Six people were arrested and charged with running an illegal video gambling operation.
All across the US in 2009, authorities were working on keeping illegal gambling out of their jurisdiction. Numerous arrests have been made, the latest just two days before the new year.
Authorities had been investigating in Augusta for the past six months. The Raceway on Deans Bridge Road and the CK Convenience Store were the main targets and machines were seized from each location on Wednesday.
Sgt. Richard Elim from the Sheriff’s Office Vice Division claims the two convenience stores had been caught offering the illegal video gambling machines in the past and had been warned. However, the stores did not heed the warning and on Wednesday, the raids and the arrests were made. The two stores are not connected, although both busts occurred on the same day.
A major movement has been going on in the US to stop these illegal video gambling machines. Alabama Governor Robert Riley has gone as far as to set up a task force to stop the activity.
FBI agents have arrested Michael Olaf Schuett, 29 and a German national living in South Florida on a tourist visa. He is believed to be responsible for helping American online poker players transfer over $70 million in winnings.
Schuett was apprehended after customers of his company, MCM Capital Management, tried cashing large cheques at their banks, claiming they were from online poker winnings. Allegedly he ran an illegal payment processing company from his home, managing funds for up to 23,000 online gamblers. Schuett handled tens of thousands of dollars every day using a network of banks, Escrow services and online payment services, moving the winnings around for his customers in the U.S.
He received wire transfers from European bank accounts and dispersed the winnings to U.S. and Canadian online gamblers.
FedEx employees also became very suspicious due to the number of parcels being delivered and picked up at the Schuett’s home. Sometimes FedEx would pick up or deliver as many as 150 parcels a week. FedEx opened several of the parcels and all had checks in them, so they alerted authorities.
The German national will be held while Federal authorities search his property, computers and any other material used for illegal online gambling activities.
The biggest gambling operator in Europe is OPAP. The company which owns a gambling monopoly in Greece, hired former Olympic organizer to run their company.
Yannis Spanoudakis has been named the Chief Executive Officer of OPAP. The company, which has almost 1,000 employees, has been operating in Greece since 2000.
In the past, any form of competition for OPAP has been opposed by the government in Greece. Other companies have attempted to enter the market, but they have largely failed. Stanleybet was the most recent attempt, but they were shut down very quickly.
Greece is one of the countries having problems with the European Commission because of their Internet gambling laws. Online gambling is illegal in Greece and outside companies are not permitted to accept customers from Greece.
This is similar to the situation in the US. The laws in the US are vague when it comes to Internet gambling, but the country has gone after gaming companies who have accepted US customers, one of which was PartyGaming, one of the largest online gaming companies in the world.
OPAP is majority owned by the Greek government, with the government holding a thirty-four percent share of OPAP. This is the reason the government has been slow to change their existing laws that allow OPAP to operate as a monopoly.