Details are still sketchy but we’ve learned of five more individuals arrested in what appears to be a large racketeering and gambling investigation. Perhaps if they’d stuck to going to visit swankybingo.com, things would have been better for them. Alas, it seems they preferred the wrong kind of cards.
Earlier today we reported on three West Boca residents arrested with poker connections.
Now thanks to tips from readers and to the Sun-Sentinel we’ve got more, but the prosecutors and police are withholding full details for now.
This case shows there is a big difference between the games offered at https://www.best-casino.net/ and the kind of underground racketeering that remains rife in our society. The gambling aspect appears more certain now so we’re sticking with our original nickname for this: the Poker Face Case. At this point, we should remind our readers that they should only gamble through legal avenues like pay by phone slots games. Moreover, we’ve found a total of five additional people involved in the investigation so far. Not pictured is Allen (or Allan) Klein of Margate, reportedly age 77. In the mugshots at top we have Erik Bishop (35, Parkland), who has significant West Boca connections, along with Patsy Capolongo (65, West Palm Beach), Darren Klein (36, Coral Springs, son of Allen), and Michael Dangelo (or D’Angelo, 58, Pompano Beach).
Capolongo is in PBSO custody with bond set at $1 million. We don’t know what his charges are yet.
Update: Thanks to another reader tip, Capolongo has other illegal gambling charges against him, per LoHud, and also from a NY Times article from 1997.
Bishop is in BSO custody facing a total of 9 counts including 2 of racketeering and 6 involving bookmaking.
D’Angelo is listed by BSO with 10 counts, mostly the same as Bishop but also with a high level count for money laundering which adds $150K to his bond amount.
Darren Klein has 6 counts listed though his bond is set much lower. Per the Sun-Sentinel the elder Klein faces 22 counts which might make him the top dog.
BSO declined to provide us with any documents. Similar to what they apparently told the Sun-Sentinel, BSO says they are under seal from a judge so they can’t release them. Hopefully we will have more details this weekend or next week.
We’ve found minimal or no criminal history for most of the defendants. Bishop had a felony Broward case in 2012 with 2 counts, something to do with securities fraud from 2009. That case also had several defendants.
It must be crime week in West Boca. Let’s hope the big stories only come in threes because this is the third.
Thanks to yet another helpful reader, we learned that there was substantial police activity in the Cimarron neighborhood on the east side of Ponderosa Drive between Palmetto Park and Glades Road. The reader specifically referenced Chipmunk Drive, and we found two arrests from that street that fit the timing.
In the above mugshots, the two on the left and middle are Devon Shalmi (30) and Thomas Cuce (32), reported at the same address on Chipmunk Drive. That property appears to have been foreclosed in the last few years and acquired by a local investor under an LLC, so it appears these two men are renting the place out.
The third gentleman on the right, Joseph P. Petrolino (47), has a reported address not far away in Mission Bay.
All three were arrested on the “charge” of “Out-of-County Warrant.” This normally means there’s some kind of criminal case pending against them in another county. We searched Broward and Miami-Dade along with the FDLE warrant database and our local federal court, but didn’t find anything. As we were finishing up the article we heard from PBSO:
The three individuals you are inquiring about are being investigated by the Broward Sheriff’s Office. PBSO just executed a warrant that is signed by a Judge. We have no information regarding BSO’s case.
One thing notable about the three arrests is the very high bond amounts that were set. Petrolino’s bond is set at $135K, Cuce’s at $125K and Shalmi’s at a whopping $305K.
So far we haven’t found much more information. All three appear to be poker players in events at area casinos (including in Broward) so that’s a possible hint, but then again it could be completely unrelated.
We will contact BSO and update the story if and when we find out more.
Of course, all arrestees are innocent until proven guilty.