Hawaii restaurant owner admits to money laundering

HONOLULU (AP) - A Hawaii restaurateur says he laundered more than $1 million in gambling money through his restaurants.

Thomas Ky is the owner of Assaggio restaurants in Hawaii. The Honolulu Star-Advertiser reports the 47-year-old pleaded guilty Thursday in federal court to money laundering. He agrees to forfeit $1.3 million of illegal Internet gambling money.

Twenty-one people have pleaded guilty for their involvement in the gambling operation.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Larry Butrick says if Ky opted to go to trial, the government would have testimony from other defendants who agreed to cooperate.

Ky faces a maximum term of 20 years in prison when he's sentenced on May 7.

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