A West Palm Beach man has been slammed with a nearly six-year prison sentence after admitting he ran a multimillion-dollar illegal sports gambling ring and prostitution business while evading taxes. Dion De Cesare, 54, was sentenced to 71 months in prison on December 6, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of Florida. He was convicted of money laundering, gambling, running a prostitution operation, and tax evasion, and he must pay more than a million dollars to the IRS in restitution.
De Cesare, who entered the guilty plea in front of U.S. Magistrate Judge Bruce E. Reinhart owned two social clubs named Whispers All Girls Staff and NXT. For years, these establishments served as fronts for prostitution services, from which De Cesare profited handsomely. De Cesare channeled the illicit earnings through third-party accounts and used them to cover mortgages and expenses for his properties scattered across West Palm Beach. The man also ran a restaurant and nightclub, Renegades, where, between 2011 and 2017, De Cesare failed to file his proper dues to Uncle Sam, evading personal and payroll taxes.
De Cesare's criminal enterprises extended beyond the sex trade into the realm of online sports gambling, where bets were placed on a website with a server based in Costa Rica. For seven years, from 2015 to 2022, De Cesare laundered gambling proceeds by instructing gamblers to make debt payments to various third parties for his benefit, furthering the reach of his enterprise. In addition to the prison term and the IRS repayment, the court will decide on the forfeiture of a slew of De Cesare's assets, including multiple properties and flashy vehicles, in an upcoming hearing.
U.S. Attorney Markenzy Lapointe from the Southern District of Florida and several special agents from Homeland Security Investigations, the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office, and the IRS Criminal Investigation department were involved in addressing this case. The investigation was spearheaded by the HSI West Palm Beach Office, PBSO, and IRS-CI. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Mark Dispoto and Nicole Grosnoff, along with Trial Attorneys Francesca Bartolomey and Raemy Charest-Turken, led the prosecution and are handling asset forfeiture.