4 U.K. men facing nine years in jail if they don’t pay £800,000 laundered in casinos

By Christine Duhaime | October 9th, 2010

A U.K. professional gambler, Harvinder “Micky Singh” Batth, and three co-defendants must come up with £800,000 in restitution in the next six months or spend more time in jail.

Batth was a member of a U.K. group that laundered millions of pounds at casinos on behalf of crime bosses. He was a well-known professional gambler in that country’s casino circuit who was accorded casino VIP treatment.

The Financial Action Task Force has cautioned casinos about their approach to high-spenders and VIPs because of the tendency for increased money laundering risks. According to the FATF, casinos often relax AML procedures for VIP customers instead of conducting enhanced due diligence.

In 2008, Batth was convicted of money laundering conspiracy and VAT fraud and sentenced to nine years in prison. Batth and his co-defendants transferred large amounts of money from the proceeds of crime to a bank in Dubai so that it could be withdrawn and used by their associates. Funds were laundered at U.K. casinos by depositing vast sums at casinos and withdrawing most of it the next day after some gambling activity had occurred.

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