Haltom City company, execs plead guilty in eight-liner case

Posted Friday, Mar. 22, 2013  comments  Print Reprints
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Officials with HEST Technologies, a firm that supplied software and hardware to the eight-liner gambling industry, pleaded guilty today to money laundering and racketeering charges and the company has been ordered to dissolve within a year.

In an Anderson County district court, HEST Technologies Inc. pleaded guilty to engaging in organized criminal activity for gambling offenses and was ordered to pay a $5,000 fine, according to a statement from the Texas Attorney General's office.

HEST President Chris Canard pleaded guilty to money laundering and engaging in organized criminal activity for gambling offenses and was ordered to pay a $2,000 fine and serve five years probation.

Robert Houchin Sr. also pleaded guilty to money laundering and engaging in organized criminal activity for gambling offenses and was ordered to pay a $2,000 fine and serve five years probation. Robert Houchin Jr. and Andrea Geist executed sworn statements admitting guilt of the gambling offenses and entered into 12-month agreements requiring them to avoid criminal activity.

The HEST Technologies headquarters was raided in August 2012 in a joint operation led by the Attorney General, the Anderson County Criminal District Attorney's Office, the Tarrant County Criminal District Attorney's Office and the Dallas Police Department.

"They were a very large and complex operation that expanded well beyond the borders of Tarrant County and Texas," said Terry Grisham, Tarrant County sheriff's department spokesman.

Doug Lowe, Anderson County district attorney, said that his office has been going "up the food chain" on this case for the past four years.

"We were out to get them," Lowe said. "We punished them pretty hard and shut the doors of an illegal gambling operation that no one could touch."

Mitch Mitchell, 817-390-7752

Twitter: @mitchmitchel3

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