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Dryer taken to the cleaners!
Hunter star could lose $250,000 ... and his wife is already gone

Hunter star Fred Dryer, who plays a tough law-and-order cop on TV, is caught up in a bizarre mob scandal that could cost him a quarter of a million dollars.

Dryers's nightmare began when his wife Tracy - who has since dumped him and taken their three-year-old daughter Caitlin with her - persuaded him to put up a massive bail to keep her father, John Vaccaro, out of jail.

Vaccaro, 48, was sentenced to nine years in jail in 1985 for his part in a major slot-machine fraud in Nevada.

The mobster appealed and posted his own $100,000 bond to stay out of prison.

Later, when the judge raised bail to $350,000, son-in-law Dryer put up the title to a 12-unit apartment building he owns in Long Beach, California

But Vaccaro has since been indicted in Los Angeles on charges of drug trafficking, gambling and conspiracy.

And, since his alleged criminal activities took place while his appeal was pending, the U.S. attorney in Reno, Nevada, has begun proceedings to forfeit Vaccaro's bail - including bondsman Dryer's $250,000 building.

The scandal is doubly embarrassing for the 200cm Dryer, a former football star with the Los Angeles Rams and New York Giants.

For one thing, a year after he put up the building for bail at his wife's request, she left him for restauranteur George Santo Peitro, Linda Evans' former love.

Tracy has since split with Santo Pietro, whose Hollywood restaurant, according to court papers, was the alleged meeting site of a Cosa Nostra meeting.

And in his popular Seven Network series, Dryer, 41, plays Rick Hunter, a maverick crime fighter whose own family is mixed up in organised crime.

Now he's caught up in a real-life case that it seems not even his Hunter partner, Dee Dee McCall (played by Stepfanie Kramer), could get him out of.

His mother-in-law Sandra, 47, is already serving an 18-month sentence for the slot-machine scam, which involved raking off about $8 million from the one-armed bandits.

She is said to be the first woman to have her name entered in Nevada's "Black Book" - a list of people barred from the state's casinos because of convictions for gambling-related crime.

Meanwhile, her husband John stands accused by a grand jury in Los Angeles of being a key member of a Cosa Nostra family controlling crime in California and Nevada.

Says a friend of the rugged actor: "The saddest thing is that Tracy has left him since he put up the money.  It's a bitter pill to swallow.

"But Fred is not the kind of guy who would let something like this affect him.  He's not terribly upset or dwelling on it.  He's strong and looks to the future, and right now, he's getting more of the notice and applause he deserves for his Hunter role.

"And he's pragmatic enough to take the attitude that you don't loan money or assets that you can't afford to lose."


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