Mehmet Hassan had a real taste for gambling- and he was good at it, too. The father-of-three Londoner was known to sometimes bring home more than 15,000 from a night at the casino. At 56 -year old, his career in professional gamble had introduced into considerable wealth. Hassan enjoyed spending his money frivolously- on poker, fine dining and young women.
It was his weakness for the latter which led to his brutal demise.
On a cold February evening, Hassan headed out for what was going to be a typical night at the Palm Beach Casino in London. Accompanying him was his latest girlfriend, the 25 -year-old Leonie Granger. Always with a smile on her face; the beautiful Miss Granger had determined it easy to charm her route into Hassans heart. The two of them walked arm in arm throughout the night, kissing passionately, posing for photos, and enjoying an expensive dinner together. Hassan reportedly joked to the casino receptionists, over-the-moon with pride over his gorgeous companion. Little did Hassan know that Granger had expended the last few weeks planning his murder.
After Granger gambled away 1,000, which Hassan had given her to spend at her caprice, the couple took a taxi back to Hassans apartment. Shortly after arriving, however, Granger started building excuses as to why she couldnt stay the night. She left in a hurry. Perhaps Hassan was bewildered as to her sudden change in behaviour, perhaps he thought nothing of it. A few minutes later, two men arrived at his door.
The men were Kyrron Jackson and Nicholas Chandler. With the door unlocked, they easily forced their route into Hassans home, tying him with duct videotape to a chair in the bedroom. Both humen took turns to physically assault Hassan, taunting him for having fallen victim to Grangers trap. It is unclear for how long Hassan had to endure the ruthless beatings of his attackers before eventually bleeding to demise. Once murdered, Jackson and Chandler proceeded to plunder Hassans home, searching for casino winnings. After determining thousands of pounds worth of hidden cash, Jackson and Chandler then use their telephones to cinema their perverse festivity. Hurling around wads of cash and stuffing 50 notes in their underwear, the video demonstrates Jackson and Chandler laughing as Hassan lay murdered in the next room. The movie also reveals that Granger joins them soon after. She is find grinning next to Jackson, who is at this point wearing a gas mask. Fleeing together, they take 3,000 along with Hassans Tv and mobile phone. The next morning, after receiving a bellow from a concerned relative, police checked on Hassans apartment to find him lying in a pond of his own blood and with shoe prints on his face.
It didnt take police long to realize Granger had played a role in the brutal murder and apparent raid. After investigating telephone records and CCTV from the Palm Beach Casino on the night of the murder, police were quickly able to determine the cause of, and motive behind, Hassans tragic demise. Jackson and Chandler were convicted with murder and sentenced to a minimum of 36 years in prison. As for Granger- the” honey trap” killer received a sentence of 16 years in prison, with the somewhat lenient charge of manslaughter.
Montecasino in Johannesburg is one of the citys most prestigious and well-known gambling resorts. With its impressive fort architecture and luxurious interior, the casino watches many hundreds of guests enjoy its selection of poker rooms and slot machines everyday. On one particular September afternoon, a guest of the casino complained about a terrible smell coming from the parking lot.
A casino employee went out to investigate, soon tracing the source of the horrific smell to the boot of a dark vehicle. Police arrived at the scene. No one was sure what to expect when the boot was opened.
The severely decomposed body of Dustan Blom lay stuffed inside. Discoloured and bloated; the condition of his body would have made a sight-based identification near impossible had it not been for the tattoo on his hip, recognized by one of Bloms friends. The deceased was reported to have been covered in yellowish brown abrasions and was producing an overwhelmingly fouled odour. An autopsy of the body exposed Dustin had been narcotic and strangled, dating his time of demise to within the last few days.
Blom had been a wealthy and successful tycoons, leading examiners to immediately suspect there was a financial motive behind the killing. His wife had died in childbirth three years prior and Blom had succumbed to a life of excessive drinking and frivolous spending. Amongst the many places in which he chose to drown his sorrows was a local stripclub known as the” Lollipop Lounge .” One of the clubs strippers, Maruschka Robinson, was said to have had a special relationship with the late Blom. He appeared to have been particularly fond of her, showering her with gifts and even letting her stay rent-free at his home. Robinson denied any participation in the murder, as did her drug-dealing boyfriend at the time, Jean-Pierre Malan.
A series of text messages between the couple proposed to otherwise, however. It transpired that the couple have all along been been taking advantage of Bloms weakness for Robinson. Regularly spiking his drinks with date rape drugs, the couple made a habit of withdrawing money with his charge card as he lay unconscious. Then, deleting the withdrawal notifications from his telephone, the two would return his card and mobile undetected. Blom would wake up with no notion that hed been robbed of thousands of dollars. On the fateful night in question, Blom had fallen asleep early and attained the drugging process more difficult. Malan suggested they instead set Blom in a chokehold that would have him pass out for a longer period of time. Whether or not it was ever Malans intention to actually kill Blom, the chokehold resulted in his asphyxiation. After disposing of the body, CCTV depicts Robinson and Malan withdrawing fund from Bloms credit card in a pacify and unhurried fashion.
DNA found on Bloms body, along with the conspiring couples uncovered text messages, was enough evidence with which to convict the murderous devotees. What was once a romantic and loyal companionship between the two crooks soon turned bitter, with each one blaming the other for Bloms death. Both have been charged with premeditated murder and still await their sentence.
Professional poker appears to have been a glamorous occupation. You earn your fund from travelling to tournaments all over the world, or else sitting at your laptop in the convenience of your own home. The big stars construct millions of dollars from having a strategic and psychological edge over foes, and they use their winnings to live a life of luxury.
Except in reality it doesnt always work up that route. At least it didnt for Ernie Scherer.
Scherer may have been a talented player, but his $350,000 dollars in poker earnings didnt make up for the phenomenal quantity of debt hed managed to acquire over the years. With $90,000 in gambling indebtednes, $40,000 in credit card indebtednes and a $616,000 loan from his father for a new home- Scherer was under a lot of fiscal pressure. Add to this his failing marriage, and what could be described as a somewhat sociopathic mindset, and you have someone on the brink of snapping.
And snap is exactly what he did. In 2008, on a sunny day in March, Scherer visited his parents at their country club home in California. Scherers family, consisting of his parents and sister, were very close. They regularly went on holidays together and kept in touch through phone calls and emails. There was no reason for Scherers parents to have been surprised when their son abruptly appeared at the door. After welcoming Scherer in, his father turned his back for a moment. Scherer took the opportunity to pick up a baseball bat and viciously beat his father until he was on the ground and incapable of moving. His mother stood hollering in horror. Scherers father died after multiple blunt force-out trauma traumata to his head, at which point Scherer turned to his mother, Charlene. She suffered at least twenty blunt force injuries to her head. She also had her wrists, carotid arteries and jugular vein slit open.
In an attempt to make the murder look like a robbery, Scherer then stood in his parents blood with a pair of Nike shoes hed bought the day before in a size different from his own. He then strolled over the house in the direction of valuables, pulling aside sheets, knocking vases and emptying drawers. Scherer removed all murder weapons before exiting the scene. Ironically, it was his deliberate and careful attempt to stage the crime scene as burglary which had detectives suspecting there was something more to the case.
Investigators agreed the way in which the house has been ransacked appeared too “obvious.” Several valuables were left untouched, indicating there was an alternative motive behind the intrusion and brutal slayings. They considered the couples son, Scherer, who stood to inherit$ two million from his mothers home. CCTV even revealed a red convertible, similar to Scherers, entering the Country Club on the night of the murder and then leaving four hours later. The quality of the video was too poor to make a definite identification of the car. Though his alibi on the night of the murder was weak, Scherer preserved a poker face throughout interrogation. Examiners were convinced of his involvement, but had no substantial proof connecting him to the murders. Police were at a standstill until, combing the house for what must have seemed like the millionth period, one sleuth detected a bloodied receipt for a baseball bat and pair of Nike shoes from a nearby athletics store.
At this phase Scherer had packed his purses, left his wife and toddler son, and fled to Vegas where he gambled extravagantly and placed Craigslist ads to satisfy random girls. The high roller was promptly saw and arrested, with both his wife and sister witnessing against him in court. Scherer was convicted with two life words in prison.
From the outside, Jill Rockcastle and Bill Gustafik seemed like a perfectly normal and happy couple. Charismatic, sociable and apparently successful; their friends and neighbours thought highly of them and their apparently perfect life together. Little did they know how the couples relationship was fueled by a terrible avarice for power and fund. They were preoccupied with the high life, undergoing plastic surgery and confiscating any opportunity to appear in the spotlight. They also shared a talent for manipulating everyone around them.
Dealing with cocaine and gambling addictions, the couple were prepared to do almost anything for money. This leading them down a life of fraud and scams. Bill was a professional poker player and at times, when the money was coming in, things were great between the ambitious couple. At other days, like on those occasions Bill would lose thousands of dollar in only one night, the relationship turned bitter. Jill subsequently confessed.
Bill started to become more and more violent, often lashing out at Jill. He became obsessed with pornography and delved further into his drug addiction. After an especially heated debate, Bill grabbed Jill by the hair and pulled her back with great force. Terrified, Jill reached for a nearby knife and stabbed Bill in the chest more than a dozen periods. Panicked and in a state of hysteria, Jill then fled to a motel in California. She was find alive but unconscious on her motel bed just a few weeks later; a 10 -page suicide note by her side. The note revealed the sinister nature of Jill and Bills relationship .
Jill then addresses Bills ex-wife in the letter; a woman with whom Bill had a young daughter.
Two years ago, he did plan to have you and your Mom killed. He paid a guy to do it while we had[ Bills daughter] in Las Vegas for our Christmas time. It was the scariest few daysFind console in the fact “weve been” run and cannot hurt you anymore.If for some reason I fail in this, at least this will guarantee my conviction and I will have to pay everyday for my disgusting life. Not that it could mean anything but I am truly sorry. To the people who loved me, I apologize for this shame.
Two years ago, he did plan to have you and your Mom killed. He paid a guy to do it while we had[ Bills daughter] in Las Vegas for our Christmas time. It was the scariest few daysFind console in the fact “weve been” run and cannot hurt you anymore.
If for some reason I fail in this, at least this will guarantee my conviction and I will have to pay everyday for my disgusting life. Not that it could mean anything but I am truly sorry. To the people who loved me, I apologize for this shame.
Upon discovery, Jill had to expend the next two weeks in intensive care. Once fit enough to stand trial, she was sentenced with 10 years to life in prison.
On September the 19 th 1997, police were called to a bloody scene at a Las Vegas hotel. Marcus Bebb-Jones, a British professional gambler, had put a gun in his mouth and pulled the trigger. The bullet exited through his cheek, leaving him alive but hemorrhaging profusely. After taking the overweight and balding human to hospital, researchers detected a suicide note.
In a different room at the same hotel, a three-year-old boy was observed completely alone, naked from the waist down. This was the mans son who had been abandoned for the last 48 hours.
The story is a tragic one. Marcus Bebb-Jones and his beautiful wife, Sabrina, had been struggling with their hotel business. Their arguments had become more frequent and Marcus Bebb-Jones became increasingly ashamed of his inability to provide for his family. Some say Sabrina had requested a divorce and wanted full custody of their son. After Sabrina stormed out of a shopping center during an debate one day, Bebb-Jones was left worrying whether she had deserted them for good. Remembering Sabrina had some family in Las Vegas, Bebb-Jones ran in search of his wife in the neon city. After endless searching but no luck, Bebb-Jones depression got the best of him. He turned to gambling, prostitutes, and cocaine in an extravagant two-day binge. Having maxed out all of his and his wifes credit card, the poker player felt too ashamed to deal with the results of his actions, and decided to commit suicide.
This was the story Bebb-Jones went with. It was a persuading one. It allowed police to file Sabrinas disappearance as a “missing persons” suit, and it allowed Bebb-Jones to return home to England and start a new life. Those who knew of his wifes disappearance and suicide endeavor empathised with Bebb-Jones tragic past, and admired him for turning their own lives around. Bebb-Jones lived comfortably in England for 16 years, enjoying some success at both local poker games and online tournaments; even qualifying for the William Hill Grand Prix.
All this changed in 2004 when a skull was discovered at a remote meadow in Colorado. Though severely decomposed, forensics were nonetheless able to identify a bullet meander in the skull. Through dental records, they were able to determine the skull had belonged to Sabrina Bebb-Jones. A distinct type of plant was found at the grassland- a plant which was also found under Bebb-Jones vehicle following Sabrinas disappearance. The evidence began to pile up.
Bebb-Jones denied murdering his wife, but afterward pleaded guilty to second-degree slaying when realizing this was his only chance of avoiding life in prison. The real narrative unravelled. On the working day of the murder, Bebb-Jones had told Sabrina that he wanted to take her and their son on a hike in the timbers. He drove them to a remote region at the Colorado-Utah border and asked her to step out of the car. Shooting her in the head, Bebb-Jones then left his wifes body to be feed by wild animals. It is unclear whether their son witnessed the murder.
Bebb-Jones then took Sabrinas credit card and headed to Vegas for his two day binge, abandoning his son in a hotel room. After spending approximately $13,290 on narcotics, casinoes, and prostitutes, Bebb-Jones guessed the best style to disguise the murder was to pretend Sabrina had strolled out on him and their son. Purposely shooting the gun to the side of his mouth, Bebb-Jones never intended to kill himself. It was the perfect crime until 16 year later when the remaining Sabrina came back to haunt him. Bebb-Jones was sentenced to 20 years.
As for his son- he was raised by his grandparents upon moving back to England, and is now in his early 20 s.
Though the world of professional lottery can be both safe and rewarding, theres no doubt it attracts its fair share of offenders and the aforementioned murderers are just the tip of the iceberg. From the Hilton arson of 1981 to the ; theres never a dull moment in the controversial city of Vegas.
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