7 arrested in illegal gambling sites’ raids, including Fort Pierce, Delray Beach

Published: May. 10, 2023 at 10:45 PM EDT
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Seven people, including two from Palm Beach County and one from St. Lucie County, have been arrested after the Florida Gaming Control Commission announced the bust of multiple illegal gambling operations in the state, including in Delray Beach and Fort Pierce.

They all are facing charges of racketeering, conspiracy (racketeering), money laundering (not exceeding $100,000), conspiracy (money laundering), keeping a gambling house, agent or employee of gambling house, unlawful manufacture, sale or possession of coin-operated devices.

The raids were conducted at Players Paradise Arcade, 4900 Linton Blvd. in Delray Beach; Midway Arcade, 4986 25th St. in Fort Pierce, Lucky Game Lounge in Tampa and an unnamed site in St. Petersburg.

Officials said the investigation resulted in the seizure of more than $1 million in assets, cash, slot-style gaming machines, computers and ATMs.

Leonid Barmak, 57, of Jupiter, was arrested and released from the Palm Beach County Jail on a bond of $144,000 including $1,000 for each for 42 slot machines. His twin brother Alexandre Barmak, of Hutchinson Island, remained in the St. Lucie County Jail on Wednesday without bail, after being arrested on a Palm Beach County warrant, including 41 illegal slot machines.

Leonid Barnik's wife, Yuliya Sobolevska, 42, also was arrested along with Alexander Freidman, 62, and Anna Friedman, 58, a couple both of Sunny Isles; Leo J. Kutin, 37, of Reisterstown, Md.; and Peter Brover, 64, of St. Petersburg.

The information was found in a 66-page arrest report listed for Leonid Barmik on the Palm Beach County Clerk's Office website.

Commission spokesperson Eric Carr told WPTV that the Attorney General's Office will release information on arrests.

In all, 360 slot machines were seized from the arcades across the state, including 120 in Delray Beach and 93 in Fort Pierce.

The state gaming commission said they received a complaint about the Midway Arcade, which prompted them to serve a warning notice letter of Florida gambling laws on Jan. 27.

"Illegal gambling establishments operate outside the legal, regulated market to exploit vulnerable Floridians," Lou Trombetta, the FGCC executive director, said in a statement. "They are usually associated with organized crime, do not generate state tax revenue, and do not provide the same consumer protections or safeguards as legal gaming operators."

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