In the language of Las Vegas casinos, big spenders are known as whales, and one of the biggest whales of all time is sitting behind bars. Last year, the I-Team broke the story of this man of money. George Knapp updates this twisted tale and the mountain of money the agents uncovered.More>>
The Drug Enforcement Administration says the man tied to the world's largest cash seizure, and his Las Vegas girlfriend, were laundering the profits from drug sales at Las Vegas casinos. Known as Mr. Ye, he was arrested by DEA agents last night. The I-Team will have the latest at 4 & 6.More>>
Thursday, May 23 2013 4:04 PM EDT2013-05-23 20:04:19 GMT
LAS VEGAS -- The woman found dead in her home earlier in the week has been identified as 75-year-old Jean Main, according to the Clark County Coroner's Office. Main died from a gunshot wound to the head,More>>
Metro Police have released a photo of the purse that belonged to a 75-year-old woman who was found shot to death in her northwest home.More>>
Thursday, May 23 2013 2:09 PM EDT2013-05-23 18:09:43 GMT
LAS VEGAS -- After more than eight years of delays, a sex offender who worked as a nurse is going to prison for sexually assaulting a 10-year-old patient. The nursing board gave Paul Santiago a licenseMore>>
After more than eight years of delays, a sex offender who worked as a nurse is going to prison for sexually assaulting a 10-year-old patient.More>>
Thursday, May 23 2013 12:51 PM EDT2013-05-23 16:51:49 GMT
LAS VEGAS -- The men accused of killing a 15-year-old boy while attempting to steal his iPad will remain in jail with no bail set. Jacob Dismont, 18, and Michael Solid, 21, appeared in Las Vegas JusticeMore>>
The men accused of killing a 15-year-old boy while attempting to steal his iPad will remain in jail with no bail set.More>>
Thursday, May 23 2013 3:47 PM EDT2013-05-23 19:47:47 GMT
LAS VEGAS -- Local attorney Randolph Goldberg received Thursday morning a two-year prison sentence and must make more than $700,000 in restitution after pleading guilty to a federal tax evasion charge. GoldbergMore>>
Local attorney Randolph Goldberg received Thursday morning a two-year prison sentence and must make more than $700,000 in restitution after pleading guilty to a federal tax evasion charge.More>>
Thursday, May 23 2013 4:17 PM EDT2013-05-23 20:17:16 GMT
LAS VEGAS -- Some major nationwide companies in Las Vegas are recognizing the importance of the Hispanic labor force and are targeting them specifically for jobs with a website called iHispano.com. TwentyMore>>
Some major nationwide companies in Las Vegas are recognizing the importance of the Hispanic labor force and are targeting them specifically for jobs with a website called iHispano.com.More>>
Thursday, May 23 2013 2:05 PM EDT2013-05-23 18:05:48 GMT
LAS VEGAS -- Not for the faint of heart, in a couple of months thrill seekers will have a chance to zip between two towers at the Rio resort in Las Vegas. The Rio is a popular spot take it the breathtakingMore>>
Not for the faint of heart, in a couple of months thrill seekers will have a chance to zip between two towers at the Rio resort in Las Vegas.More>>
Thursday, May 23 2013 1:46 PM EDT2013-05-23 17:46:01 GMT
LAS VEGAS -- A woman was killed Tuesday night after being hit by a semitrailer on U.S. 95 near Railroad Pass. According to Nevada Highway Patrol, the 37-year-old Henderson woman was walking along U.S.More>>
A woman identified as 38-year-old Penny Amber Franco was killed Tuesday night after being hit by a semitrailer on U.S. 95 near Railroad Pass.More>>
Thursday, May 23 2013 1:32 PM EDT2013-05-23 17:32:48 GMT
LAS VEGAS - A viewer wants to know why Hacienda Avenue between Mountain Vista Street and Nellis Boulevard is in such bad condition. The road is riddled with potholes and is in desperate need of pavementMore>>
A viewer wants to know why Hacienda Avenue between Mountain Vista Street and Nellis Boulevard is in such bad condition.More>>
Thursday, May 23 2013 1:31 PM EDT2013-05-23 17:31:07 GMT
LAS VEGAS -- The FBI has released the photo of a murder suspect that barricaded himself in an apartment Tuesday night and fired shots at law enforcement. An FBI official and Las Vegas police say severalMore>>
The FBI has released the photo of a murder suspect that barricaded himself in an apartment Tuesday night and fired shots at law enforcement.More>>
Thursday, May 23 2013 9:30 AM EDT2013-05-23 13:30:09 GMT
LAS VEGAS - Wet ‘n' Wild is opening its doors just in time for Memorial Day weekend. The opening marks the first time in nine years a large scale water park will call Las Vegas home. The old Wet 'n WildMore>>
Wet ‘n' Wild is opening its doors just in time for Memorial Day weekend. The opening marks the first time in nine years a large scale water park will call Las Vegas home.More>>
One of the biggest high rollers in Las Vegas history is now the target of an international manhunt. He's a Chinese born businessman who dropped tens of millions of dollars on the Strip, money that may have come from the methamphetamine racket.
Law enforcement agencies simply won't talk about the case, but the Eyewitness News I-Team has pieced together the big picture and has the exclusive details.
He's not a high roller any more. Now, he's a fugitive. The man known on the Strip as "Mr. Ye" is suspected of moving massive quantities of chemicals from Asia into Mexico, and then into methamphetamines labs run by the Mexican Mafia. Mexico is the source for most of the meth on the streets of Las Vegas and other American cities.
Lawmen say that deadly trade is what allowed Mr. Ye to live like a king. When lawmen entered a posh Mexico City mansion back in March, they were stunned. Everywhere they looked they found cash -- stacks of 100-dollar bills inside suitcases and more stacks inside file cabinets, closets, and hidden in walls.
By the time they stacked it all up, it filled nearly an entire room making it the largest seizure of suspected drug cash in history -- more than $207 million. At least, that's what was reported.
The home belongs to Zhenli Ye Gon, a Chinese born businessman who became a Mexican citizen back in the 90s. He's now a wanted man in 180 countries. Interpol and the Drug Enforcement Administration are looking for him. If they had only been in Las Vegas a few months ago, they could have nabbed him with ease.
According to casino employees who want to remain anonymous, he was known on the Strip as Mr. Ye. He primarily gambled at the Venetian and reportedly stayed there from December through February, playing $200,000 per hand in the high rolling baccarat salon.
He lost big, dropping at least $40 million -- 80 million according to a casino source -- and probably a lot more says a law enforcement contact. Mr. Ye was, in the words of an executive, royalty at the Venetian. The casino gave Ye a Rolls Royce and a Lamborghini as a thank you for his play.
Did anyone check on the source of all his money? It depends on whom you ask.
A spokesman for the hotel says company policy prohibits any statement about whether someone is or has been a guest, but that a company executive alerted the gaming control board back in March, along with another agency, and that casino records are available to law enforcement.
A spokesman for Nevada Gaming Control said in may that the federal drug enforcement agency contacted the Venetian first, and that gaming control helped serve a search warrant at the property, seizing, among other things, the two expensive automobiles. Gaming Control declined to comment to the I-Team, ditto for the D.E.A. because of the sensitivity of the ongoing investigation. However, in an earlier interview, the D.E.A.'s top Las Vegas agent spoke about the Mexican Mafia's involvement in the methamphetamine trade, which is where they believe Ye earned his millions.
Mike Flanagan, Las Vegas D.E.A. chief, said, "The methamphetamine is not only destined for Nevada, but Nevada is also a transition point for methamphetmaine shipments throughout the U.S.
The D.E.A. knows that Ye imported 32 tons of pseudoepehedrine into Mexico in 2004 alone, and that he has continued to smuggle it into the country using false labels. In March, lawmen caught a break when they busted one of Ye's ships carrying 19 tons of the chemical from China through Long Beach, California and down to Mexico.
Ye was building a 150,000-square foot, high tech plant in Yoluca, just outside of Mexico City, supposedly to process cold medicine, but agents think the stuff was meant for gigantic Mexican meth labs. His estimated 60 tons of imported pseudoepehdrine would have been enough to supply 80-percent of the U.S. meth market. His Tolluca plant could have processed enough to earn $14 million a day, by one estimate.
Ye is on the run. Back in Mexico, his wife and ten others were arrested. In May, Ye met with the Associated Press in the New York office of Attorney Ning Ye and told a whopper of a story, claiming he was forced to accept and hide all that money by Mexican politicians who threatened to kill him. It's not really his, he claimed, denying that he still imports pseudoephedrine. Officials in Mexico and the U.S. think the story is, to say the least, pretty weak.