Brian J Smith
Las Vegas Legal Snapshot: Avtandil Khurtsidze Found Guilty on Racketeering
In June 2018, Avtandil Khurtsidze, a former interim middleweight world titlist, was found guilty of racketeering, wire fraud and other charges and now faces 40 years in prison. Razhden Shulaya, a business associate of Khurtsidze’s, was also convicted as part of a crime ring that operated in New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania.
A jury unanimously found Khurtsidze and Shulaya guilty after the two men, who were part of a criminal group, engaged in acts of extortion, violence and fraud on various casinos. They also engaged in illegal gambling, trafficking in stolen goods, money laundering, bribery and identity theft. Khurtsidze acted as the enforcer for the criminal ring, assaulting others and committing acts of violence against Shulaya associates. In addition, the group participated in a scheme of targeting particular models of electronic slot machines using algorithms designed to predict machine behavior. They obtained the technology they used through violent means, such as the kidnapping of a software engineer.
What is Racketeering?
According to a Las Vegas criminal lawyer, racketeering is both a state and federal crime, which is prosecuted heavily in Las Vegas. It is criminal activity carried out in order to further an already unlawful business. It is not usually one isolated crime, but a combination of several crimes. However, not every crime committed in the furtherance of an unlawful business can be considered racketeering. If you are transporting drugs and get a speeding ticket, the speeding ticket is not considered racketeering. Crimes that may be considered racketeering include:
- Felony battery
- Identity theft
- Involuntary or voluntary manslaughter
- Receiving or transferring stolen property
- Resisting arrest
- Sexual assault
- Statutory sexual seduction
Nevada Racketeering Laws
Nevada has a very broad range of behaviors that can be considered racketeering and the penalties are significant. If you received proceeds earned as a result of racketeering to purchase real property or to establish the enterprise, you may be found guilty. You may be found guilty if you organized, managed or directed a criminal enterprise using funds you earned illegally or if you use violence to intimidate others to further the activities of the organization. In Nevada, you don’t even have to actually commit the crime to be found guilty. If you conspired with others to commit a crime that falls under the definition of racketeering, you may be found guilty.
Racketeering is a serious charge in the state of Nevada and if you have been charged or are being investigated for a racketeering offense, you need to speak to an attorney as soon as possible. You can reach an experienced Las Vegas criminal defense attorney by calling 702-380-8248 to arrange for a no obligation consultation.