MOSCOW, July 29 (RAPSI) - A defendant in a high-profile US criminal case targeting Russian-American organized crime was granted permission to gamble in accordance with a request filed by his attorneys with a federal court in New York last week seeking a series of modifications to his bail conditions, including permission to gamble, according to a court document obtained by RAPSI.

In April US officials unveiled charges against 34 alleged members and associates of two interconnected Russian-American organized criminal enterprises. Among other things, the groups were accused of having operated at least two international bookmaking organizations catering to an extraordinarily wealthy clientele based in the US, Russia, and Ukraine.

US prosecutors claimed in a statement accompanying the unveiling of the indictment that the first organization - the Taiwanchik-Trincher Organization, allegedly run by Vadim Trincher - is accused of having laundered tens of millions of dollars from Russia and Ukraine into the US via Cyprus. The second organization - the Nahmad-Trincher Organization, allegedly run by Illya Trincher - is believed to have been financed by a prestigious New York City art gallery, among other sources.

Eugene Trincher - son of Vadim and brother of Illya - is suspected alongside various other defendants of having promoted and operated high-stakes illegal poker rooms in New York City and surrounding areas. He faces up to 30 years in prison if convicted on charges that include operating an illegal gambling business and money laundering conspiracy.

A letter addressed to Judge Jesse Furman of the US District Court for the Southern District of New York sought four modifications of Eugene's bail conditions. First, permission was sought to allow Eugene to reside in a Los Angeles property that he is presently leasing and in which he had been residing prior to his arrest. Second, the letter requested that Eugene be supervised by Pretrial Services in Los Angeles. Third, permission was sought to allow Eugene to travel to Las Vegas in order to visit his brother Illya, provided he give Pretrial Services 72-hour notice of his departure, and 24-hour notice of his return. Fourth, permission was sought to allow Eugene to gamble.

According to the letter, Eugene's permission to gamble would be tempered by a small handful of conditions: he could only gamble in licensed Nevada gaming properties, he would be required to check in with Pretrial Services on a daily basis in connection with his winnings, he would "be permitted to deposit his winnings in the casino cage," he would not grant anyone else permission to use his casino accounts, and he would not use any safe deposit boxes.

The judge's signature on the so-ordered line at the foot of the letter is accompanied by the following stipulation: "In addition to the above conditions, the defendant shall cash out his chips every day and deposit all funds in the relevant casino account (with the exception that he is permitted to retain a portion of said funds for spending money and he will maintain a ledger reflecting the same, which he will report to his pre-trial services officer on a daily basis)."

The statement accompanying the indictment's unveiling boasted that among the defendants was Alimzhan Tokhtakhounov, aka Taiwanchik, who gained international fame after having been separately indicted on allegations of having engaged in official bribery during the 2002 Winter Olympics, which were hosted by Salt Lake City.
The statement claims that Tokhtakhounov "used his status... to resolve disputes with clients of the high-stakes illegal gambling operation with implicit and sometimes explicit threats of violence and economic harm," adding that he received $10 million for his service during a single two-month period.

Tokhtakhounov faces up to 90 years in prison if convicted of the charges presently pending against him as part of this indictment, which include substantive and conspiracy charges under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO), conspiracy charges relating to money laundering and extortion, and charges of operating an illegal gambling business and of unlawful internet gambling.