May 9, 2024 3 min read


Man Who Fueled Gambling Addiction with Money from Fraud Goes to Prison

The case involves a compulsive gambler from Kona who was sentenced to prison after defrauding investors and using the money to gamble in Las Vegas

Problem gambling can have dire consequences to the lives of the people addicted to the activity, their families and loved ones. People affected by at-risk or compulsive gambling may resort to unlawful activities such as scams, fraud and even violent crimes such as robberies. Labeled as vulnerable individuals, such people are also at risk of self-harm. A similar is the case of a man from Kona, Hawaii, who was recently sentenced for fraud that helped him fuel his gambling addiction.

The incident involves a 48-year-old man identified with the initials N.D., who was sentenced earlier this week. The man defrauded 45 victims out of a total of $1.2 million. The money was subsequently used to fund his gambling habit which has grown out of control. An investigation into the actions of the 48-year-old uncovered that he had been stealing from investors between 2017 and 2020.

Although he allegedly told investors, some of whom were his friends, that they would be helping an online business, in reality, the man used the money for high-stakes gambling in Las Vegas. To cover up his tracks, the man reportedly created fake contracts and other documents.

Still, this did not prevent law enforcement from uncovering the unelaborate scheme that resulted in his sentencing. As announced by Hawaii News Now, the 48-year-old was sentenced by a California judge to four years and nine months in federal prison. Upon serving his sentence, the man will undergo three years of supervised release. He was also ordered to repay the people he defrauded.

Compulsive Gambling Pushes the Man on the Path to Destruction

Michael Green, the attorney representing the 48-year-old, who was quoted by West Hawaii Today, deemed his client a “compulsive gambler.” According to the lawyer, his client’s gambling habit pushed him “down the path of destruction.” Green explained that his client lost not only his job but his marriage.

Writing to US District Judge Hellen Gillmor, the compulsive gambler admitted that when he was winning big, he lived at the penthouse suite at the Bellagio in Las Vegas. “I was gambling every day. I’d lose, then I’d get more money (via the fraudulent activities) and I went on this crazy streak,” the man admitted. He remembered winning a whopping $600,000 in a couple of days.

After this massive win, the man bought two cars and an expensive watch. However, the 48-year-old admitted that he didn’t stop gambling and lost all of the money he won in less than 24 hours, which required him to return the cars. During a difficult time in 2020, after losing $300,000 in Las Vegas, the man also reportedly attempted to end his life.


Jerome is a welcome new addition to the Gambling News team, bringing years of journalistic experience within the iGaming sector. His interest in the industry begun after he graduated from college where he played in regular local poker tournaments which eventually lead to exposure towards the growing popularity of online poker and casino rooms. Jerome now puts all the knowledge he's accrued to fuel his passion for journalism, providing our team with the latest scoops online.

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