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Four people plead in attempted theft case at Minnesota casinos

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news Bemidji, 56619

Bemidji Minnesota P.O. Box 455 56619

LEECH LAKE -- Four people plead guilty in federal court Friday to conspiracy to commit theft from Minnesota tribal gaming establishments, including White Oak, Northern Lights and Palace Casinos on the Leech Lake Indian Reservation.

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Elias Rodriguez, 30, Agustine Henry Gueits, 28 and Anuedi Rivera-Bido, 29, of New York and Geetha Leena, 28, of Las Vegas, each plead guilty to one count of conspiracy and one count of aggravated identity theft. The defendants were indicted Jan. 21.

In their plea agreement, the defendants admitted that on Sept. 6-7 they conspired with others to commit theft from tribal gaming establishments by obtaining cash advances with counterfeit credit cards in excess of $35,000. Fortune Bay casino on the Bois Forte Reservation was also targeted.

An investigation that led law enforcement to Palace Casino in Cass Lake on Sept. 7 was triggered by information provided by Leech Lake casino employees. Rodriguez, Gueits, Rivera-Bido and Leena were apprehended by the Cass County Sheriff’s Office until into federal custody.

Anthony Rodriguez, 26, of New York plead guilty as a co-conspirator to one count of conspiracy and one count of aggravated identity theft. Lisa Monique Cruz, 38, also of New York was included as a co-conspirator on the indictment as was Katina Meropi Stamat, 33, of Tampa, Fla. Stamat remains at large.

The defendants face a maximum sentence of five years in federal prison for conspiracy and a minimum of two years in federal prison for aggravated identity theft as well as fines and forfeitures.

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