A Las Vegas condo owned by Antonio Esfandiari was robbed of $1 million worth of cash, casino chips, and jewelry. According to the Las Vegas Review-Journal, the woman who is alleged to have committed the crime was in police custody before being bailed out. Svitlana Silva, a 46-year-old from Arizona, was arrested on suspicion of theft and burglary.
The long-time poker pro resides at the luxurious Panorama Towers on the Las Vegas Strip. Many high stakes poker players live in Panorama due to its close proximity to the Strip. Esfandiari has lived in the high rise condos for over a decade.
CardsChat News spoke with a poker player who also resides in Panorama Towers. He wishes to remain anonymous, but told us that Esfandiari is “notorious for leaving his front door open.”
Father’s Acquaintance Allegedly Steals from Antonio Esfandiari
According to the police report, Silva is alleged to have stolen approximately $1 million in valuables from Antonio Esfandiari. She supposedly took $300,000 to $500,000 in casino chips, $150,000 in cash, and about $400,000 worth of jewelry from the poker pro’s home.
She wasn’t a stranger to the Esfandiari family. Silva previously lived with Antonio’s father, Bejan, whom you’ve probably seen cheering his son on during televised poker tournaments. Per the police report, the Esfandiari’s called authorities on July 14 to report they returned to their shared condo and discovered numerous missing valuable possessions. The report also states that Silva had access to the home and “had been left alone in the condo on several occasions.”
Burglary Suspect ‘Cooperative’
Police described Silva, who was charged with residential burglary and possession of stolen property valued at $100,000 or more, as “cooperative” during her post-arrest interview. She admitted she previously lived with Esfandiari but said she moved out and returned the key in March, but still occasionally stays with Bejan when she’s in town.
Esfandiari called police last weekend to share a potentially damaging piece of evidence against Silva. He claims he received a tip that Silva had recently competed in a high stakes home game in Las Vegas. She allegedly bought in to the game with $5,000 in cash, lost that money and then reentered for another $20,000. After losing that amount, the police report states, she pulled out another $30,000 before proceeding to lose all the money again.
The report then claims after she ran out of cash, she began rebuying with approximately $300,000 worth of Aria and Bellagio chips. She is said to have won money with those chips in play and asked to be paid out in cash. Each time she bought in, she signed her name on a log.
Shortly after cashing out, another player cashed out and received a combination of cash and chips. Silva supposedly later sent a text to that player informing him that he won’t be able to cash out those chips. Casinos track large denomination chips and will only allow the person whose name is attached to that chip cash it out.
“Hey forgot to tell you my chips has special mark on computer so if its stolen they can’t cash out,” the report states Silva text to the player. “She goes (on) to say this person will have a problem cashing out.”
Upon receiving this damaging bit of evidence from Antonio Esfandiari, police apprehended Silva at the Aria parking garage. She had several $25,000 Aria and Bellagio chips in her possession at the time of arrest.