Human Trafficking Gang Washed Millions Through Hard Rock Tampa: Feds


Posted on: November 23, 2021, 04:54h. 

Final up to date on: November 23, 2021, 05:39h.

A violent human trafficking gang smuggled greater than 100 Mexican and Central American laborers into the US to work in “brutal situations” on farms in Georgia, Florida, and Texas, federal prosecutors stated this week.

Hard Rock Tampa
Appearing US Legal professional for the Southern District of Georgia David Estes, seen above, delivered information of the indictment at a press convention this week. (Picture: Fox Information)

In keeping with a newly unsealed federal indictment, the gang laundered the proceeds of “modern-day slavery” by means of money purchases of property and companies, and by funneling tens of millions by means of the Hard Rock Casino Tampa.

In all, 24 defendants, principally US residents, are indicted on a litany of offenses. These embrace human smuggling, fraud, and cash laundering. The gang fraudulently exploited the H2A visa program to attain its ends.

Federal prosecutors have referred to the group because the “Patricio transnational legal group” (Patricio TCO). The group is apparently named for its matriarch, 70-year-old Maria Leticia Patricio, of Nichols, Ga.

Violence and Rape

In keeping with prosecutors, trafficked employees had been held in “cramped, unsanitary quarters and fenced work camps with little or no meals, restricted plumbing, and with out protected water.”

Not less than two employees died due to office situations. Victims had been compelled to dig onions with their naked palms and paid 20 cents for every bucket they harvested. The gang threatened them with weapons and violence and promised to kill the victims’ households again residence in the event that they didn’t toe the road.

Not less than one sufferer was allegedly “repeatedly kidnapped and raped” by one gang member over a interval of 13 months. This unnamed particular person additionally tried to kill the sufferer, in accordance with the indictment.

Prosecutors stated this gang member was “aided and abetted” on this by defendants Charles Michael King, the proprietor of Kings Berry Farm in Waycross, Ga, and his affiliate, Stanley Neil McGauley.

The Patricio TCO made round $200 million from its operations, prosecutors stated.

Operation Blooming Onion

The coordinated arrests of the 24 suspects in 2020 was the end result of a six-year investigation, dubbed “Operation Blooming Onion.” This concerned the FBI, Homeland Safety, the US Division of Labor, and different federal businesses.

The American dream is a robust attraction for destitute and determined individuals throughout the globe, and the place there may be want, there may be greed from those that will try to use these prepared employees for their very own obscene earnings,” stated David Estes, Appearing US Legal professional for the Southern District of Georgia.

“Due to excellent work from our regulation enforcement companions, Operation Blooming Onion frees greater than 100 people from the shackles of modern-day slavery and can maintain accountable those that put them in chains,” Estes added.

$7.1M in On line casino Winnings

In keeping with the indictment, Patricio TCO members frequently deposited giant sums on the Laborious Rock Tampa. One member, Delia Ibarra Rojas, purchased in for nearly $9.5 million in money from round 2015 to 2020. One other, Juana Ibarra Carillo, deposited $2.7 million over the identical interval.

Rojas reported winnings of $7.1 million through the interval, in accordance with prosecutors.

On the time of publication, Laborious Rock Tampa has not responded to a request for remark from On line casino.org.

Tribal casinos are required to adjust to the US Treasury’s anti-money laundering (AML) controls. This implies they need to file Foreign money Transaction Studies (CTRs) at any time when a buyer brings in or takes away greater than $10,000 in money inside a 24-hour interval.

In addition they have to make a Suspicious Exercise Report (SAR) submitting at any time when they’ve suspicions a few transaction.



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