San Diego

Swedish Businessman Pleads Guilty to Racketeering Enterprise in El Cajon

Peter Magnus Karlsson collected a shoebox full of $90,000 in proceeds from illegal sports betting from a doorstep, according to his plea agreement.

A businessman from Sweden pleaded guilty Thursday to an international racketeering enterprise at an El Cajon casino where he engaged in illegal sports bookmaking and related criminal activity, according to the U.S. Attorney's office.

Petter Magnus Karlsson provided funding to Sanders Bruce Segal, a lead defendant in this case, for a bookmaking operation that collected illegal sports bets from customers across the Southern District of California and the District of Arizona at the Lucky Lady Casino and Card Room.

According to his plea agreement, Karlsson also provided access to sports gaming websites hosted in Costa Rica, Hong Kong, United Kingdom and Curacao. 

In order to distribute large amounts money between themselves, Karlsson and Segal, with others, would use runners and various ways to transfer the money.

At one point, Karlsson collected a shoebox full of $90,000 in cash from Segal's front doorstep, accompanied by another defendant, according to his plea agreement.

A total of eight defendants, including Karlsson have pleaded guilty in the case.

“Sophisticated racketeering organizations continually rely on the mistaken notion that they can move beyond the reach of the law by spreading their operations across international borders,” stated FBI Special Agent in Charge Eric S. Birnbaum. “Today’s guilty plea demonstrates that there are no safe havens. The FBI will work tirelessly with our international partners to ensure that criminals are brought to justice no matter where they hide.”

Karlsson agreed to forfeit $139,834 as part of his plea agreement. His sentencing is scheduled for July 17. 

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