A man who ran gambling dens on Edinboro Street, Harrison Avenue and Beach Street, and who employed aggressive muscle to beat up people who owed him money, pleaded guilty on Friday to an 11-count indictment charging him with running an illegal gambling business and using threats of violence, the US Attorney's office in Boston announced.
Minh Cam Luong, a.k.a. Ming Jai, 48, will be sentenced Jan. 14.
In indictments issued last year, Luong was listed as a ringleader of a gambling, drugs and prostitution ring that extended from Boston to New York. A wiretap caught Luong expressing his feelings about Boston:
Boston is like the countryside but Boston is quite wealthy ... But these country folks don't know any fucking thing. People like us, who always travel from city to city .... everywhere, everywhere we have our own people in every city. ... Then if something that doesn't seem right, when we do it in Boston. ... Opening a business over here [in Boston] is better. It's different from New York. As long as you don't make any trouble ... they won't bother you. ... As long as you have a license, then they won't come and close you down ... Fuck, we just hang, hang a sign there.
Luong, who boasted of making $60,000 to $70,000 a week, wouldn't let something minor like surgery to install heart-valve stents interfere with business, according to the indictment, which added that at one point other ringleaders criticized him for unleashing his hired bully too readily on debtors - they felt all the people getting beaten up might be scaring away customers.