SACRAMENTO -On April 26, 2019, Bar Shani, 27, of San Francisco, pleaded guilty to conspiring to launder money for an illegal gambling business operating in Northern California.
According to court documents, between October 2016 and November 2017, Shani conspired to launder the cash proceeds of an illegal gambling business run by Orel Gohar, 28, of San Francisco, and Yaniv Gohar, 35, of Berkeley, that placed and maintained video slot machines at businesses in Northern California, including Sacramento.
This case is the product of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the California Department of Justice – Bureau of Gambling Control.
“This investigation by California Department of Justice Bureau of Gambling Control special agents and FBI agents put a stop to some of the illegal gaming in Northern California,” 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.”
According to court documents, Shani conspired with Atir Dadon, 34, of Sherman Oaks, and Orel Gohar to launder the proceeds of the gambling business. They agreed that Shani and Dadon would take the cash from the gambling business and use it to pay the workers in their cosmetics business. In exchange, Shani and Dadon would arrange for Orel Gohar to receive checks from the cosmetics business. Dadon indicated in the memo lines on the checks that Orel Gohar had provided consulting and training services when in fact, he had not. They used code words in their conversations about the transactions, referring to the money as bottles of alcohol or other non-cash items. Between October 2016 and November 2017, Shani and Dadon laundered more than $150,000 from the Gohars’ gambling business. Dadon pleaded guilty on April 5th
Yaniv Gohar and Orel Gohar fled the United States after their arrest in December 2017 and remain at large.
Charges are pending against co‑defendants Adam Atari, 35, of Sherman Oaks; Raz Razla, 48, of Sherman Oaks; and Eran Buhbut, 33, of Oakland.
Shani and Dadon are scheduled to be sentenced by U.S. District Judge Garland E. Burrell Jr. on July 12th. They face a statutory maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $500,000, or twice the value of the monetary instrument or funds involved, whichever is greater