Saugus man gets “1 to 3 years in prison” for corruption

Members of a multi-agency police operation led by New York Police Department investigators surrounded Cyrus Irani's Saugus home on Oct. 28, 2015, and arrested him and four other Santa Clarita men for illegal $32 million nationwide sports betting ring. Photo by Austin Dave/The Signal
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A Saugus man, named as the kingpin of an illegal $32 million sports betting ring and brought to trial in New York, was sentenced to “one to three years in prison” after pleading guilty in September to a criminal charge of enterprise corruption, a New York District Attorney spokeswoman told The Signal Friday.

Cyrus Irani, 39, was sentenced a week ago, on Oct. 26, after he pleaded guilty to the crime in September.

“Defendant Cyrus Irani was sentenced on October 26, to 1 to 3 years in prison following his guilty plea to enterprise corruption,” Ikimulisa Livingston, spokeswoman for the Queens District Attorney’s Office told The Signal Friday.

Irani was the last man standing in a group of five SCV men arrested two years ago in a nationwide series of arrests carried out by a specialized team of New York organized crime detectives and detectives with the Transnational Organized Crime Section of the Los Angeles Police Department’s Major Crimes Bureau.

One by one, each of the other four Santa Clarita Valley suspects rounded up in raids carried out locally in October 2015, then extradited to New York, had the criminal cases against them reduced to misdemeanors or adjourned. Irani was the only one left standing.

In August, Irani, identified by New York prosecutors as the alleged kingpin of the betting ring, was ordered to stand trial.

Saul Salama, 47, had the criminal case against him adjourned last month.

In April, a third SCV suspect, Jeffrey Metelitz, 55, was given a conditional discharge after he pleaded guilty to first-degree attempt to promote gambling.

The two other SCV suspects – Julio Alvarenga, 40, and Andres Arriaga, 41 – also received conditional discharges after they too pleaded guilty to first-degree ‘attempted promoting gambling,’ a Class A misdemeanor, Kevin R. Ryan, spokesman for the Queens County District Attorney’s Office, told The Signal in March.

The two Santa Clarita Valley men were given conditional discharges when the court determined that “neither the public interest nor the ends of justice would be served by a sentence of imprisonment and that probation supervision is not appropriate,” according to the New York Penal Code.

The five local men were among 17 suspects across the country indicted Oct. 28, 2015, by a Queens County grand jury on charges of unlawfully operating a highly sophisticated sports gambling enterprise that stretched from New York to California and used offshore-based gambling websites.

According to the grand jury indictment, the online gambling enterprise, which is alleged to have booked more than $32 million in bets annually, is also accused of laundering its criminal proceeds by depositing and withdrawing large sums of cash from various banks throughout the United States.

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