Russian Art Gallery owner Indicted On International Gambling Charges

To most of New York, Hillel Nahmad is best-known for being the owner of the Helly Nahmad Gallery. The art owner and his family are well-known art dealers in New york, but authorities have now linked Nahmad to another industry.

On Tuesday, Nahman ahd 34 other defendants were named in an indictment spanning two separate illegal operations. Nahmad is accused of running an illegal international gambling ring, and also has been charged with money laundering. The indictment spand not only across activity in the US, but as far reaching as Nahmad’s home country, Russia.

The art aspect of Nahmad’s business was not left out of the indictment. The gallery owner is accused of selling an unsuspecting customer a painting that was worth $50,000, for $300,000.

The gambling operation is at the forefront of the investigation, with some high profile players being named in the case. Among the accused are Molly Bloom, who was at the center of a poker story back in 2011, when she was identified as the person organizing high stakes poker games with some of Hollywood’s biggest A-listers. The indictment did not name any of the celebrities from the 2011 case.

Another aspect of the current case is the role a Russian mob played in the operation. Authorities accused several people connected with the Russian mob of being the enforcers on betting losses accrued by customers of Nahmad.

Investigators are still trying to piece some of the details toegther regarding the extent of the operation. When arresting Vadim Trincher at his apartment, authorities found $2 million in gambling chips from the Bellagio in Las Vegas.

The gambling operation is said to span from New York, all the way across the US to the West Coast and California. Several wire transfers of hundreds of thousands of dollars were found from a bank account in Switzerland, owned by Nahmad’s father, to Nahmad’s account in the US. The money is thought to be transfers used to fund the illegal sports betting operation.

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