Associated Press Published

Seven Indicted in More than $7 Million Martinsburg Charity Bingo Scam


Seven Eastern Panhandle residents have been accused of keeping almost all of the money from bingo and raffle games that were being held for charity.

Multiple media outlets report that the seven Martinsburg-area residents were each indicted Tuesday on numerous charges, including 15 counts of mail fraud and 18 counts of money laundering. Authorities say the defendants operated illegal bingo and raffles for a fraudulent charity known as Kids Against Drugs of W.V., Inc. and doing business as “Big Bucks Bingo.”

U.S. Attorney William J. Ihlenfeld II said at a news conference Wednesday that the games were supposed to benefit the Berkeley County Humane Society and Fraternal Order of Police 83, but the defendants took at least 90 percent of the revenue by pocketing more than $7 million.