Paskenta Nomlaki Tribe Gets M from Mom and Son Casino Thieves
A mother-and-son embezzlement team that bilked almost $5 million from the Paskenta Tribe of Nomlaki Indians was sent to prison by a federal judge in Sacramento in February. Now, they’re on the hook for $5 million each in criminal damages to the tribe, which owns the Rolling Hills Casino north of Sacramento.
The latest ruling came at a restitution hearing of the US District Court for the Eastern District of California on Wednesday. The court previously sentenced both Ines Crosby, 76, and her son, former FBI agent John Crosby, 56, to four years and nine months for conspiracy to embezzle or steal from a tribal organization and filing a false tax return.
Ines Crosby’s sister, Leslie Lohse, 67, was also charged in the case and sentenced to three years and five months in prison. Lohse had paid $902,208 in restitution at the time of her sentencing, which the court deemed sufficient.
The Crosbys whooped it up at the tribe’s expense over a 12-year period, according to the original complaint.
They treated the tribe’s coffers as “an ATM with no withdrawal limit,” splurging on luxury homes and cars – a $243,000 swimming pool and spa here, an $84,000 koi pond there — according to court documents.
Hundreds of thousands more went on jewelry, handbags, and beauty products, and to pay for a World Series trip, chartered jet flights, and vacations to Hawaii and New Zealand, prosecutors said.
While the Crosbys were convicted of stealing around $4.9 million, the tribe claimed the true figure was closer to $20 million. They could do this because they exerted control over the Paskenta Nomlaki that was based on “fraud, coercion, intimidation, extortion, bribery, and deception,” the tribe claimed.
John Crosby was the tribe’s economic development director for many years. His mother was the tribe’s administrator, and his aunt was treasurer.
Assault on Casino
The Paskenta Nomlaki was restored and recognized by the federal government in 1994. It opened the Rolling Hills a decade later.
But the tribe says its members did not truly begin the process of establishing real self-determination until April 2014, when it finally removed the Crosbys.
But they did not go quietly. The tribe claims the Crosbys and their allies subsequently launched an “armed assault” in a bid to retake the casino, which was coordinated with a “destructive cyberattack” on the casino and the tribe’s computer systems that wiped some of the evidence against them.
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