Washington State Gambling Commission make arrest after $300,000 found missing from VGW Post 3207
The Washington State Gambling Commission (‘WSGC’) has arrested Sara Lee Moon at the Prossers Veterans of Foreign Wars Post, accused of theft charges. The suspect was sent to Benton County jail on four counts of first-degree theft.
The Washington State Gambling Commission acts as an accredited, limited jurisdiction law enforcement agency, and is unique insofar that it is the only statewide agency which solely deals with gambling licensing, regulation and enforcement. The Commission also adds: “Our mission is to protect the public by ensuring that gambling is legal and honest.”
The arrest comes after Washington State Gambling Commission agents conducted a routine inspection of records at the venue for which Moon was a Gambling Manager. The aforementioned suspect began working in her role in June 2019.
Since June 2019, Washington State Gambling Commission discovered over $300,000 was missing from the Veterans of Foreign Wars gambling and bar accounts. Although the arrest notes do not fully disclose where the funds were moved to, it does indicate that ‘some of the funds had been put into personal financial accounts owned by Moon.’
The Washington State Gambling Commission commented: “Moon used her position of trust, confidence, and fiduciary responsibility to facilitate the commission of crimes’.
The investigation also shut down three private Facebook groups which had over 12,000 members.
The last large scale law enforcement undertaken by the Washington State Gambling Commission was in December 2021, when the WSGC shut down several illegal pull-tab games operated on Facebook by Washington residents.
No criminal charges were levied against the suspects in 2019. A woman would sell pull-tabs on Facebook Live (i.e scratchcards) where live viewers would pay through online wallet applications. The stream was interactive, and punters would also get their name put up on a streaming wall.
Two additional suspects were also identified and admitted to taking part in the games, according to the release. All three people agreed to shut down the pull-tab games. No criminal charges were filed because the people stopped the illegal activity and cooperated with the gambling commission, the release states. The suspects identified a woman in Florida as the retail seller of the pull-tabs.
The investigation also shut down three private groups on Facebook that encouraged illegal gambling, profiting from it and taught people how to do it. There were at least 12,000 members from all over the country across all three groups the release states.
Sports wagering in Washington State is illegal except at Tribal casinos with amended Class III compacts following the passage of HB 2638. Washington online gaming does not look to be on the horizon in the short to medium term, either.
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