Guilty plea entered in casino scam case

A New York man pleaded guilty Wednesday in federal court in Lafayette to conspiracy to use counterfeit cards to draw cash advances in Louisiana casinos.

Benfen Zhang, 43, and three Chinese nationals got the cash advances between November 2012 and September 2013, according to a release from the U.S. District Court.

“Zhang drove his coconspirators to casinos and provided the counterfeit access devices,” the release states. “The coconspirators would then get cash advances from the casinos, gamble briefly, and then move to the next casino.”

The total stolen was $103,624, the release states. The casinos hit were: Coushatta Casino Resort, in Kinder; L’Auberge Casino, Lake Charles; El Dorado Casino, Shreveport; and Horseshoe Casino, Bossier City.

Zhang faces up to 10 years in prison, three years supervised release, a $250,000 fine and restitution.

The release did not state when sentencing would occur.