Sulphur man pleads guilty to racketeering charge

<p class="indent">A 56-year-old Sulphur man pleaded guilty to one count of racketeering Thursday in state district court.</p><p class="indent">James Douglas Runte was the last of four defendants in a racketeering prosecution that resulted from the fraudulent use of customer credit cards at Club Vixen and Club Cabaret, gentlemen’s clubs in Sulphur.</p><p class="indent">Judge Mike Canaday sentenced Runte to 12 years with the Department of Corrections, stipulating that he should serve nine years in prison followed by three years of supervised prison upon his release.</p><p class="indent">An investigation revealed more than $250,000 in fraudulent transactions from customer credit cards over a two-year period.</p><p class="indent">The other three defendants, Chris Runte, 29, of Sulphur; John Runte, 33, Sulphur; and Krystal Amber Gaudet, 33, Zwolle, all pleaded guilty earlier this year.</p><p class="indent">They received varying sentences – 23 years combined for the three of them – and are currently serving time on their charges.</p><p class="indent">Prosecutors earlier said that all four defendants were cooperating with the ongoing investigation.</p><p class="indent">A racketeering charge can carry up to a 50-year sentence, which prosecutor Hugo Holland discussed during one of Gaudet’s hearings. Because of her cooperation, prosecutors asked that her sentence be capped at 10 years and she was ultimately sentenced to eight years.</p><p class="indent">Calcasieu Parish District Attorney John DeRosier said this was a “joint investigative effort” that involved the Louisiana State Police and investigators with the District Attorney’s office.</p><p class="indent">“These cases require a tenacity and willingness to sort through thousands of documents and transactions,” DeRosier said.</p>””Guilty

SportsPlus

Crime

7/1: Calcasieu Parish Sheriff announces arrest list

McNeese Sports

Southland welcomes two new members

Local News

Supreme Court rules ex-presidents have broad immunity, dimming chance of a pre-election Trump trial

Business

Names in the News: People shaping the future of Lake Area business

life

On Campus: SW La. students recognized for achievements

Local News

How will Louisiana’s new Ten Commandments classroom requirement be funded and enforced?

Local News

Biden meets with his family amid pressures to step down after debate

Local News

Donation celebrated by Second Harvest, but volunteers are still needed

Local News

Grand Avenue Gym: DeQuincy landmark fading fast, group fighting to save it says

Local News

Beryl becomes major hurricane forecast to bring life-threatening conditions to Caribbean

life

Fourth of July festivities in Jennings will kick off with Stars and Stripes Festival

Local News

Ceremony held at Fort Johnson for deploying troops

Jim Beam

Jim Beam column:Don’t expect new candidates

life

SW La. nightlife calendar: There’s always something to do

life

USAF Band of the West making Lake Charles stop

high-school Sports

Upgrades planned for Jerry Simmons football stadium in Jennings

Crime

Lafayette teen charged in Ernest Street fatal shooting

Crime

6/28: Calcasieu Parish Sheriff announces arrest list

Local News

Longhorns make quite a statement to the SEC

Local News

Bicyclist fatally struck after allegedly running stop sign

Local News

PHOTO GALLERY: Stitch Guillory sworn in as sheriff

Local News

Sheriff Guillory: ‘I am living MLK’s dream’

Local News

Supreme Court allows cities to enforce bans on homeless people sleeping outside

Local News

Work begins on new artificial reef off Cameron coast to provide habitat