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Office of the
Illinois Attorney General
Kwame Raoul

Illinois Attorney General Logo


January 19, 2024

Chicago – Attorney General Kwame Raoul announced that a Romeoville man prosecuted by the Attorney General’s office pleaded guilty and was sentenced to prison for his role in a criminal operation that burglarized businesses and stole cash from video poker machines throughout Illinois.  

Syed Zaidi, 42, of Romeoville, Illinois, pleaded guilty to Class 2 felony burglary. Lee County Circuit Court Judge Theresa Draper sentenced Zaidi to three years in prison.

In August 2022, the Attorney General’s office filed charges against six individuals, including Zaidi, alleging they broke into businesses and robbed video gaming machines, stealing approximately $400,000. All the defendants have now pleaded guilty to charges stemming from their involvement in the burglary ring.

“Members of this burglary ring targeted bars, restaurants, social clubs and other small businesses that have video poker and video gaming machines. They broke into dozens of these establishments in multiple counties and stole hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash out of the machines,” Raoul said. “All the defendants who participated in this criminal enterprise have now entered guilty pleas. My office was able to hold them accountable because of countless hours of collaboration with several law enforcement agencies. I would like to thank these agencies for their hard work investigating this case.”

Another defendant in the case, Giulia Wuttke, 54, of Chatsworth, Illinois, pleaded guilty last month to Class 3 felony conspiracy to commit money laundering and was sentenced to 18 months conditional discharge. Wuttke forfeited approximately $4,100 that was seized by the Illinois State Police (ISP) when a warrant was executed at her home, and she was ordered to pay fines and court costs associated with the case.

“Working with the Illinois Attorney General’s Office, Illinois State Police and other law enforcement agencies statewide, we successfully brought another offender to justice in this video gaming burglary ring,” said Illinois Gaming Board Administrator Marcus Fruchter. “The Illinois Gaming Board will continue to work closely with our partners to safeguard the integrity and safety of Illinois gaming.”

The Attorney General’s office received support in its investigation from the Illinois Gaming Board and several law enforcement agencies, including the ISP, the DuPage County State’s Attorney’s office, the Lake County State’s Attorney’s office, the Joliet Police Department and the DeKalb, Bureau, Grundy, Iroquois, Kendall and LaSalle county sheriffs.

“The Illinois State Police is committed to protecting the public and fully investigating cases to get criminals, like this burglary ring, off the streets,” said ISP Director Brendan F. Kelly.

Raoul’s Statewide Grand Jury Bureau is authorized by Illinois statute to prosecute multi-county cases involving drugs, money laundering, guns or electronics. Working regularly with state and federal counterparts, the bureau focuses on complex, often large-scale, organized criminal activity.

Deputy Bureau Chief Andrew Whitfield prosecuted the cases for Raoul’s Statewide Grand Jury Bureau.