Nathan Nichols, a 46-year-old Corpus Christi resident was sentenced to more than two years in prison after admitting to running an illegal gambling business. The same man was also involved in the theft of US Army property in a separate case, the US Attorney’s Office Southern District of Texas revealed Tuesday.
The investigation into the illegal gambling operation was conducted by the FBI in collaboration with the Corpus Christi Police Department. On the other hand, Homeland Security Investigations looked into the stolen military property case and received assistance from US Army Criminal Investigation Division.
The US Attorney’s Office said that Nichols was the owner and operator of Lady Luck, as well as the co-owner of Theo’s Bar, two businesses that provided illegal gambling entertainment. According to the Attorney’s Office, Nichols admitted to participating in the illegal gambling operation in Corpus Christi which operated between March 2018 and August 2019.
The Man Received a Prison Sentence Followed by Supervised Release
The illegal gambling business involved computers that displayed casino-style games, resembling the function of a standard slot machine. Those games are also popular as “8-liners.” Instead of using a slot machine, the gamblers played on a computer screen. They were able to place bets and receive cash for winnings.
For his involvement in the theft of the US Army equipment and the illegal gambling business, Nichols was sentenced to 27 months or 2 years and 3 months in federal prison. In addition to his prison sentence, he will undergo two years of supervised release. Nichols was also ordered by the court to pay $1 million in restitution. Given his guilty pleas, he also agreed to forfeit some $2.18 million obtained from the illegal gambling operation.
When it comes to the US Army equipment, it was back in July 2021 when law enforcement executed a search warrant at Nichols’ home. At his home, the authorities uncovered property that belonged to the US Army which included night vision scopes and goggles, laser aiming equipment, as well as laser range finders and thermal scopes.
The overall cost of the items was some $2,176,000. An investigation uncovered that Nichols was in touch with a person that was involved in the theft of the equipment. Consequently, he agreed to buy the military equipment with the intent to resell it.