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Las Vegas man pleads guilty in online poker case

NEW YORK — A Las Vegas man nearing trial in a case that shut down U.S. operations for three Internet poker companies has pleaded guilty in New York.

Chad Elie entered the plea in federal court on Monday. The plea comes as the money processor was scheduled to go to trial April 9 along with former bank executive John Campos. Both had asserted their innocence. Elie faces six months to a year in prison at an Oct. 3 sentencing.

Elie was the only Las Vegas resident charged in last April’s indictment.

Campos was the co-owner and vice chairman of SunFirst Bank of St. George, Utah, which became Cache Valley Banks in November. Campos allegedly arranged for the bank to illegally process Internet poker transactions.

According to the indictment, Elie induced Campos to participate.

Elie and Campos were the only men headed to trial after others among a dozen people charged in the Internet gambling case reached plea agreements or remained fugitives.

Prosecutors have sought $3 billion in money laundering penalties and forfeiture after targeting three companies based overseas: PokerStars, Full Tilt Poker and Absolute Poker. Full Tilt defended its executives.

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