SACRAMENTO — On May 4, 2018, May Levy, 27, of Walnut Creek, pleaded guilty to conducting an illegal gambling business in 11 Northern California communities, collecting up to $4,000 per week on behalf of the Gohar organization.
According to court documents, between September 2015 and November 2017, Levy and several other defendants operated a business that involved installing and maintaining video slot machines at smoke shops and convenience stores in violation of California laws prohibiting such machines. Levy was responsible for machines placed in businesses in Stockton, Sacramento, Concord, Hayward, Antioch, El Cerrito, San Pablo, Richmond, San Jose, Watsonville, and Salida.
Levy and other members of the Gohar organization split the proceeds from these illegal gambling machines with the owners of the small businesses in which the machines were installed.
Levy remains out of custody pending sentencing which is scheduled for August 3, 2018. He faces a maximum sentence eof five years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
Co-defendents Yaniv Gohar, 34, of Berkeley and Orel Gohar, 27, of San Francisco failed to appear at January court hearings and warrants have been issued for their arrest. Co-defendant Eran Buhbut, 32, of Oakland is set for a status conference on June 1, 2018.
This case is the product of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and California Department of Justice – Bureau of Gambling Control.
“The investigation by California Department of Justice Bureau of Gambling Control special agents and FBI agents put a stop to illegal gaming that took place for more than two years,” said California Statewide Law Enforcement Association (CSLEA) President Alan Barcelona. “This type of illegal activity in businesses such as smoke shops and convenience stores can attract a criminal element and other illegal activity that degrade neighborhoods.”