Regulators Seek To Shut Down Lake Elsinore Casino Linked To Polygamist Cult

KCAL 2 CBS News, California/April 30, 2019

Lake Elsinore – A Lake Elsinore casino whose owners have ties to a polygamist cult is under scrutiny from state regulators over allegations it has sidestepped the proper licensing laws for two decades.

According to the Sacramento Bee, the California Bureau of Gambling Control (BGC) is investigating the Lake Elsinore Hotel & Casino, also known as the Sahara Dunes Casino, located at 20930 Malaga Rd. just off the 15 Freeway.

The casino has been operating with only provisional licenses for the past 20 years in a nondescript brick building which houses a 22-table card room.

The partners who own the casino, Joseph and Ted Kingston, are members of the family which controls the Kingston Group, a Mormon polygamist sect based in Utah which encourages marriages for girls as young as 15 and cousins, according to the Salt Lake City Tribune.

In a piece in March 2017, the Southern Poverty Law Center called the Kingston Group a “blood cult” which “mixes incest and white supremacy with old-fashioned capitalism.”

The Kingston Group is also under a federal investigation for possible tax fraud, the Tribune reports.

In a recent complaint filed by the BGC, the bureau recommended that the casino’s provisional license be canceled.

Neither the BGC nor the casino immediately responded to a request for comment.

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