The federal government took the first step Thursday to seize a Boise rental house authorities say was used for an illegal gambling operation.
In a complaint filed in U.S. District Court in Boise, prosecutors said the house at 6655 W. Victory Road, just west of the Boise Airport, was used to conduct regular poker games and poker tournaments. Players would pay cash for a buy in to participate and winnings were also paid in cash.
The two-bedroom house, built in 1984 with 2,036 square feet, is owned by Kestrel Investments. With 1.25 acres of land, it is valued at $205,800, according to the Ada County Assessors Office.
Skinner Skip Anderson and his wife, Julie, own Kestrel Investments, according to the complaint and records with the Idaho Secretary of States Office.
Federal prosecutors do not accuse the Andersons of operating the games or participating. However, they claim Skip Anderson knew illegal gambling was taking place in the house and did nothing to stop it.
Nampa resident Kings Santy leased the residence for $1,200 per month beginning in 2008. He told investigators that he told Anderson he was going to run an auto repossession company from the house. Instead, he used the house for poker games.
Santy told authorities that Anderson knew about the gambling activity for the past two or three years. A woman whose husband or boyfriend lost their rent money from a poker game called Anderson to complain, one of Santys dealers told him, the report said.
Santy states that Anderson had questioned him about conducting card games at the Victory house and that Santy admitted that he was holding poker tournaments there, according to an affidavit filed by Douglas Hart, a special agent with the Federal Bureau of Investigation who conducted the investigation.
Anderson might not have known the full extent of the poker operation, Hart wrote, but was fully aware that illegal gambling was taking place based on his conversations with Santy.
Anderson told Santy that he didnt care what Santy was doing on the property so long as it didnt cause Anderson trouble, Hart wrote.
Santy told Hart that he always paid his rent in cash. Neither Anderson nor anyone from his property management company conducted any property inspections or walk-throughs, Santy said, during the time he leased the house.
A woman who answered the phone at the property management company said Anderson had retired but would pass on a message to him. The call was not returned.
Santy also admitted to running a similar gambling operation at a home on North Kings Road in Nampa.
Police raided the Boise and Nampa houses in early April. They seized playing cards, poker chips, tables and ledgers. More than $16,000 in cash was seized from Santy, gambling managers, dealers and players at the Nampa house.
Fourteen people were cited on gambling charges in state court. Santy was not among those arrested.
Reached Thursday evening, Santy declined to answer questions related to the case.
I dont have anything to say, Santy said.
Anthony Hall, an assistant U.S. attorney handling the forfeiture case, would not say why Santy was not charged or whether a criminal investigation is ongoing.
I cant say anything about that, he said.
John Sowell: 377-6423, Twitter: @IDS_Sowell