Police arrested four people in connection with the theft of $400,000 from gaming machines across dozens of Illinois counties. Arrestees include a mother and son.
According to Illinois attorney general Kwame Raoul, authorities arrested and charged Giulia Wuttke, 52, and her son, Gino Wuttke, 33, with multiple felonies. The charges stem from crimes the pair allegedly enacted across northern Illinois. It’s Gino Wuttke’s second arrest this year.
Two others charged include Alyssa Slouka, 31, and Brian Morgan, 42. Police arrested Slouka, but Morgan was already in prison for unrelated charges.
Two more warrants are outstanding for Syed Zaidi, 41, and Lucas Bailey, 40, for their alleged involvement in the thefts.
Burglary ring targets machines in bars, social clubs
Of note? The group wasn’t targeting gaming machines at casinos in Illinois. Rather, they sought machines in bars, restaurants, social clubs and other small businesses.
Allegedly, the offenses took place across Illinois. Namely Bureau, Carroll, Champaign, Cook, DeKalb, Grundy, Iroquois, Kankakee, Jo Daviess, and Kendall counties. Also targeted were Lee, LaSalle, Kane, Mason, McHenry, McLean, Ogle, Stephenson, Vermillion and Will counties.
According to Raoul’s press release, this is how the group carried out its crimes:
“This burglary ring allegedly targeted bars, restaurants, social clubs and other small businesses that have video poker and video gaming machines. They broke into dozens of these establishments in multiple counties and stole hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash out of the machines. These arrests are the result of countless hours of cooperation between my office and several law enforcement agencies. I would like to thank the many agencies that collaborated with my office on this investigation and helped us break up this burglary operation.”
A complete breakdown of the charges:
- Gino Wuttke: 41 counts of burglary, one count of theft, and two counts of money laundering, including class 1 and 2 felonies. The younger Wuttke faces up to 30 years in prison if found guilty, and sentences run concurrently.
- Giulia Wuttke: One count of conspiracy to commit burglary, one count of conspiracy to commit theft, two counts of money laundering, and one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering. That includes class 2 and 3 felonies and could net the elder Wuttke up to 14 years in prison.
- Slouka: two counts of burglary, two counts of theft, two counts of money laundering, one count of conspiracy to commit theft, one count of conspiracy to commit burglary, and one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering. The charges include class 2, 3 and 4 felonies and a risk of up to 14 years in prison.
- Morgan: 24 counts of burglary, one count of theft, and two counts of money laundering, including class 1 and 2 felonies. Morgan also faces up to 30 years in prison.
All four will appear in court in early to mid-September.
This is the latest alleged criminal activity involving Illinois gambling. The spouse of a recent stabbing victim just received the go-ahead to proceed with a lawsuit against Caesars.
Who handles gambling crime in Illinois?
Local police departments receive aid from Illinois gaming regulation groups for gambling-related crimes. The Illinois Gaming Board investigates gaming-related crimes.
In this case, the Illinois State Police Division of Criminal Investigation assisted IGB, said ISP director Brendan F. Kelly.