5Dimes Owner Kidnapped

Written by:
Jagajeet Chiba
Published on:

The owner of a popular San Jose, Costa Rica sportsbook has been kidnapped.

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"Tony", whose real name we won't publish as Gambling911.com has a strict policy of protecting bookmaker identities who wish to operate under aliases, was last seen September 25.

A source close to Gambling911.com advised that the family paid a $750K ransom via Bitcoin and have yet to hear back.  Costa Rican authorities remain tight-lipped regarding the matter though Walter Espinoza, chief of the Judiciary Investigative Police (OIJ), confirmed today that OIJ has been investigating the disappearance of a US Expat.

“We have limited information and we cannot share many details because the life of a person is on the line”, explained Espinoza.

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"Tony" was said to have been traveling through San Isidro, Heredia and driving a Porsche Cayenne Turbo vehicle.

This is the second high profile kidnapping in as many weeks.  The wife of a Chinese importer was kidnapped September 30 and released in one week's time after her captors were paid $17,500.  Six individuals tied to that kidnapping have since been apprehended by police.

In August, a poker pro survived being shot three times and left for dead along a busy San Jose street. Steven Thompson has since recovered and is in hiding.

"Tony", now 43, has resided in Costa Rica since 1998 after graduating from the University of West Virginia.  He took control of 5Dimes from sportsbook operator Al Ross after winning a significant amount of money betting sports.  His book would go on to become a major success and outlive Ross' other gambling properties.  Ross eventually became financially burdened with legal expenses defending his son Denny, who was accused of murdering a girl and stuffing her in his trunk. 

"Tony" is married to a Costa Rican with whom he has children.  He has a reputation on sports betting message boards for his sharp wit in dealing with customers. 

5Dimes continues to operate without interuption.  

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