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13 People Pleads Guilty in Slot Scam

31 December 2001

LAS VEGAS, Nevada – Dec. 31, 2001 –As reported by the Las Vegas Review Journal: "All 13 people indicted this year in connection with a $6 million slot machine cheating scheme have pleaded guilty to participating in an illegal gambling business.

"On Friday, 60-year-old Louis Melendez became the final defendant in the group to plead guilty to the felony.

"…The 13 defendants were indicted in September in a second wave of prosecution against participants in the cheating ring, which was led by Dennis Nikrasch, now known as Dennis McAndrew.

"The second indictment in the case targeted phony winners, lookouts and blockers.

"According to Melendez's plea agreement, he traveled from Phoenix to Las Vegas in May 1997 to play a rigged slot machine at the Rio.

"Melendez won a BMW automobile but accepted $30,000 cash instead. The defendant told Dawson he kept about $2,000 for himself and gave the rest of the money to others involved in the scheme…"

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