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Fifth Guilt Plea Comes Thursday In Kansas City Online Gambling Case

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Authorities may have caught their biggest fish yet this week when a fifth person of a group running an illegal online sports gambling operation pleaded guilty in federal court. William D. Cammisano Jr. admitted to his guilt on Thursday.

The betting ring had been taking place for several years, and was being run through telephone and Internet communications with an office in Costa Rica. Cammisano admitted to collecting over $1 million in lost bets between 2006 and 2009.

This is not the first time that Cammisano has been in trouble with the law. Back in 1988, he was identified as a high ranking member of an organized crime family in Kansas City. The only higher ranking official at that time, according to the FBI, was Cammisano's father, who was the top mobster in the city.

While the online gambling investigation did not lead to any form of gambling outside of sports, Cammisano had previously been banned from casinos in Missouri back in 1994. That came after he was convicted in federal court back in 1989 for obstruction of justice.

The online gambling case in Kansas City has drawn national attention because of the insistence from federal judge's that gamblers testify. Around a dozen gamblers have been sent to jail for refusing to testify about the site where they were placing their bets. Attorneys for these gamblers tried to invoke their constitutional rights, but they were denied.

Internet gambling has become a hot topic around the US. Sports betting has always been a taboo subject for law enforcement officials, and they have in recent years went after several high profile sports betting websites.

In the Kansas City case, members of the operation were giving out 800 phone numbers where gamblers could make their bets. The wagers would then be paid, in person, at arranged meetings between the gamblers and the members of the operation.

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