Former Mohegan Sun Pocono Exec Sentenced to 32 Months for Bogus Loyalty Card Scheme

Former Mohegan Sun Pocono Exec Sentenced to 32 Months for Bogus Loyalty Card Scheme

A former executive at the Mohegan Sun Pocono in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania happens to be sentenced to 32 months for his part in a scheme that involved the casino’s slots and creating bogus loyalty rewards.

Casino fraudster Robert Pellegrini (seen here in December after pleading bad) will be exchanging in dapper matches for inmate orange during a prison sentence that is 32-month. He will also have to spend near to a half-million dollars in restitution to the casino where he once worked.

Robert Pellegrini was VP of player development for the Mohegan Sun when he and two others concocted a scheme to bilk his employers through the use of customers’ stolen loyalty card PIN numbers to play for free, permitting the gang to help keep the winnings. The operation ran from May 2014 to 2015, before Pellegrini was busted april.

It ended up being the role of Rochelle Poszeluznyj, a cocktail waitress, to note down players’ loyalty card PIN numbers as she served them drinks, before moving them onto Pellegrini, whom would create copies of the cards which he then full of free slot money. Then it was Mark Joseph Heltzel, a customer whom had formerly been caught cheating at blackjack but was mysteriously not banned, who posed as a customer that is regular used the cards to play slots, splitting the winnings among the group.

The court was told the way the trio used $478,100 in free slot play to build $418,793 in illicit winnings.

Problem Gambler

‘I’m a flawed man,’ Pellegrini, who claims to be a problem gambler, told the judge. ‘I’ve made errors in my entire life, this being the largest,’ he said. ‘we didn’t steal to pay for my bills. It was to support my gambling.’

When asked just how a gambler that is compulsive hold down a high-profile job at a casino, Pellegrini responded: ‘Where you think casino employees go on the days off? They visit other casinos.’

The scheme was uncovered when a dealer during the Mohegan Sun Pocono, who had been apparently in deep love with Poszeluznyj, spilled the beans to authorities, because he viewed Heltzel as a rival on her behalf affections.

Getting Busy

Prosecutor Michelle Olshefski countered Pellegrini’s assertion that he previously not stolen for greed, noting that even though the scam was ongoing, he had hundreds of thousands within the bank, as well as a quantity of assets. She said phone records suggested he had been the ringleader of the scheme and because he had ‘bills to spend. that he regularly told their accomplices to ‘get busy”

Nevertheless, Senior US District Judge A Richard Caputo departed from sentencing directions after hearing impassioned pleas from their family and character testimonies suggesting he had been of otherwise good character.

Pellegrini must also pay $478,350 in restitution to their former manager. He could have received because much as 20 years in prison.

Poszeluzny and Heltzel have both pleaded responsible and are due become sentenced at a date that is later. Heltzel faces 175 mostly felony counts of theft, identity theft, criminal conspiracy, and winning by fraud. His bail was set at $500,000, but had been paid off to $150,000, with the comprehending that he would surrender any firearms and spend just 10 percent of the bond to walk free until their sentencing date.

Federal Trade Commission Moves to Block DraftKings-FanDuel Merger

The usa federal government took first steps toward quashing a proposed merger between daily dream sports giants DraftKings and FanDuel, contending the deal would create a monopoly that is illegal controls 90 percent associated with the DFS market.

FanDuel CEO Nigel Eccles (left) and DraftKings CEO Jason Robins (right) argued that the merger was at top interests of DFS players, but FTC administrators disagreed. (Image: Vanity Fair)

On Friday, the Federal Trade Commission, in conjunction utilizing the workplaces of the Attorneys General of California and Washington DC, filed a suit in federal district court to get an injunction to halt the offer.

‘ We are disappointed by this decision and continue to believe that a merger is in the interest that is best of our players, our businesses, our workers as well as the dream sports industry,’ stated DraftKings CEO Jason Robins and FanDuel CEO Nigel Eccles in a joint statement. ‘ We are considering all our options at this right time.’

Antitrust-Worthy

The FTC claims the deal it illegal to engage in ‘unfair or deceptive acts or practices in or affecting commerce. because it ended up being taking shape would violate Section 7 associated with Clayton Act, which prohibits mergers and acquisitions that would in impact create a monopoly, and Section 5 of the FTC Act, which makes’

Fundamentally, the FTC refused to swallow DrafKings’ and FanDuel’s core argument that daily fantasy sports comprised just a small section regarding the much wider fantasy sports market, dominated by the variety that is season-long.

The commission concluded that DFS consumers do maybe not see season-long as a ‘meaningful substitute’ for DFS.

‘This merger would deprive customers of the substantial advantages of direct competition between DraftKings and FanDuel,’ said Tad Lipsky, Acting Director of the FTC’s Bureau of Competition.

The FTC contends that neither brand new entrants in the DFS business, nor any future expansion by existing operators, could be likely to give meaningful competition, as the two organizations hold a combined 90 percent market share that is estimated.

Love-Hate Relationship

DraftKings and FanDuel announced their intentions to merge November that is last months of speculation. As competitors, they spent an estimated $750 million trying to out-market one another, based on ESPN, while offering a broadly similar product.

Meanwhile, both companies have struggled after experiencing growth that is initially explosive. Regulatory uncertainty and legal challenges have actually plagued the industry from belated 2015 onward, which is on that front where in actuality the two companies think together they might wage the fight that is strongest.

Tough Fold: Legal Online Poker Off the Table in New York for 2017

The State Assembly in ny won’t be passing a bill to legalize internet poker before the chamber adjourns this Wednesday, June 21. That’s according to the NY regular News, which spoke to Assemblyman Gary Pretlow (D-Westchester), the prime sponsor of legislation that would’ve made the fourth most populous state the fourth state to own online game.

The web poker dream team in ny, State Sen. John Bonacic (left) and Assemblyman Gary Pretlow say they shall carry on their push for legal on-line poker in 2018. (Images: State of the latest York)

Assembly Bill 5250 desired to redefine Texas Hold’em and Omaha as games of skill rather than chance, a key distinction that would’ve permitted both games to be played online.

But Pretlow changed their optimistic tune going into the final week of legislative session, telling proponents to withhold their passion. ‘There was some opposition,’ Pretlow said. ‘We’ll pick it up year that is next than likely.’

Better Luck Upcoming Year

The Poker Players Alliance (PPA), the leading lobbying group for internet poker in Washington, DC, explained that the 2017 campaign in New York should give players plenty to cheer about.

‘This 12 months the bill maybe not only easily passed the Senate, but in addition for the very first time ever an iPoker bill passed an Assembly committee. This is progress,’ the PPA stated in a media that are social.

Pretlow has been at the forefront of trying to end internet poker prohibition into the Empire State. The Democrat first introduced the topic into their chamber back in 2014, and throughout the last 3 years, he’s remain committed to advancing the discussion.

State Sen. John Bonacic County that is(R-Orange led the fight in the ny Senate, with much more success.

His companion bill earlier this month came to a full vote on the Senate floor and simply passed, 53-9. But once delivered to the construction to be merged with Pretlow’s bill, it stalled in the Standing Committee on Codes.

A key hurdle ended up being how to cope with ‘bad actors,’ such as PokerStars, a major supporter for the bill, whom accepted digital payments from New York customers even after the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006 prohibited it.

Another roadblock for 2018 is conventional wisdom that has discovered bills pertaining to gambling tending not to move during election years.

Population Control

Online poker in the US has mainly been a bust since 2011. That has been the Department of Justice issued an opinion that the Wire that is longstanding Act which banned most types of gambling through the transmission of phone lines, used just to sports betting.

That meant that individual states were liberated to license and manage gaming that is online except sports betting. Though the DOJ under Attorney General Jeff Sessions has toyed with the basic idea of re-evaluating the 2011 opinion, up to now efforts to restore the wire work with specific prohibitions on all kinds of on the web gambling have fallen flat.

But still, only three states have legalized some forms of on the web gambling, as well as the relatively little populations of Nevada, New Jersey, and Delaware haven’t quite allowed the poker to fully recognize its online potential.

Ny, but, stood to somewhat shake up the poker that is online, with almost 20 million residents that could potentially more than double the size of the overall American player pool, while also motivating other states to maneuver forward with legislation of the very own.

Pennsylvania, the fifth many state that is populous immediately behind brand New York, may be the next market to watch. The Keystone State is considering a thorough expansion of gambling and overhaul that is regulatory and there legalizing internet poker is a chance still on the table.

Florida Seminole Tribe’s Bond Credit Rating Upgraded by Moody’s, Fitch

The Seminoles of Florida are going to conserve a fortune in the months that are coming after bond and credit rating services Moody’s and Fitch both upgraded the tribe’s bank debt and bond credit ratings.

The Seminole Tribe’s seven gambling enterprises in Florida, managed by video gaming professional Jim Allen, can borrow funds at reduced interest rates, after Moody’s and Fitch upgraded the indigenous United states group’s ratings. (Image: Miami Dolphins)

Moody’s Investment Services upgraded the Florida tribe’s current term debt and bonds rating to Baa2, and its Special Obligation Bonds to Baa3. The classifications are still described as ‘non-investment grade’ speculations while those increases are welcomed news to the Seminoles.

However, it inches the Tribe’s debt and bonds closer to investment-grade securities, and even the smallest bump in the Moody’s score ladder represents huge savings in terms of great interest compensated to lenders.

‘The reviews improvements, affirmations and strong new reviews are superb news for the Seminole Tribe of Florida once we look toward a good, stable future,’ Seminole Chairman Marcellus Osceola Jr. said in a presser. Seminole Gaming CEO Jim Allen added that the upgrades ‘will save your self huge amount of money by assisting to keep costs that are borrowing.’

Bullish on Gaming

As the Moody’s news had been cheery, things are looking even brighter for the Seminoles at Fitch. The ranks agency upped its categorization for the Tribe’s video gaming division to BBB.

Where companies level according to the top credit assessors is key to just how much they will be paying loan providers. This chart shows how countries rate overall. (Image: World Economic Forum)

According to Fitch, the investment-grade difference is based on a favorable gambling environment in the Sunshine State, and the Seminoles’ ‘steady, positive operating trends in comparison to more flat growth seen in other US gaming markets.’

The Tribe has lent $2.4 billion to repay outstanding term loans and fund expansions at its Hollywood and Tampa casinos. ‘These improved and renewed investment-grade reviews … may help Seminole Gaming to continue as one of the entire world’s most profitable gaming enterprises,’ Allen added.

Both ratings agencies also credited the tribe’s ongoing commitment to cover video gaming taxes to Tallahassee, despite not having a compact that is valid Florida.

Stalled in State’s Legislature

The state’s legislature neglected to come to terms over a new arrangement, with all the House seeking to keep gambling in its current status, while the Senate sought to expand gaming and place slots at dog and horse racetracks in eight counties.

The top chamber additionally wanted to allow the Seminoles to provide craps and roulette, in exchange a commercial casino resort become built in either Broward or Miami-Dade Counties. Moody’s and Fitch thinks the tribe’s continuing to spend gaming revenue could play into its favor during upcoming negotiations that are compact.

Bonds Explained

A bond is a debt investment issued by companies to investors who provide the entities money. These are typically not the same as shares, in that the lender isn’t acquiring ownership into the borrower’s business.

The issuing of bonds takes place whenever a business requires to boost money. Bonds tend to be viewed as fixed-income securities, because the companies issuing them agree to spend either a variable or fixed rate of interest to loan providers.

The interest rate is dependent upon just how long the financing duration is, the true number of yearly payments towards the lender, and most importantly, the credit quality of the bonds, namely, the danger from the loan.

Moody’s and Fitch reducing the risk that is long-term the Seminole Tribe’s bonds means interest rates will slightly reduce, and on $2.4 billion, that equates to millions of bucks saved.

Touchdown for Redskins, as Supreme Court Overturns ‘Disparaging’ Trademark Patent workplace Ruling

In a major ruling that reverses a longstanding statute, the United States Supreme Court has sided aided by the Slants, an Asian-American rockband that was denied a trademark by the US Patent and Trademark workplace on the grounds that the name was disparaging to individuals of Asian lineage.

The Washington Redskins trademark wasn’t renewed in 2015 by the US Patent and Trademark Office, but the Supreme Court says the law is on the NFL group’s side. (Image: Ann Heisenfelt/Associated Press)

Writing in the majority viewpoint, Justice Samuel Alito declared, ‘ The market that is commercial well-stocked with merchandise that disparages prominent numbers and groups, and the line between commercial and non-commercial speech is not always clear. If affixing the label that is commercial the suppression of any message that will lead to governmental or social ‘volatility,’ free speech casino game real money could be put at risk.’

Three years ago, online sports books had the odds of Washington being forced to change the team’s name at around Yes (+300), No (-500). The bookmakers got it right as is often the case.

The ruling is a touchdown for Washington Redskins owner Daniel Snyder. Snyder has repeatedly refused to rename the NFL franchise, despite intense public scrutiny and even after multiple indigenous American groups said they discovered the group title become disparaging.

In 2014, 50 US Senators, 48 Democrats, and two Independents, signed a letter provided for NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell asking the league to force the Redskins to rebrand. The document requested the league’s ownership send the message ‘that racism and bigotry haven’t any destination in expert sports.’

What’s in a Name?

Should the Supreme Court have seen the instance an additional light, the fallout could have been far-reaching. In US sports, there’s a host of potentially controversial team names.

In Major League Baseball, there is the Indians and Braves, and some have a problem with the Yankees designation. Into the NBA, there’s the Boston Celtics, characterized by an obese, pipe smoking Leprechaun. There is the NFL Kansas City Chiefs and Minnesota Vikings, and in college recreations, the Spartans, Trojans, Scots, and Irish are among possibly ‘negative’ names in NCAA programs that are athletic.

Of course, one man’s ‘offensive’ is another’s ‘who really cares?’ Cases in point:

The NFL’s Las Vegas Raiders are coming to town, albeit maybe not until 2020. The Oakland franchise was at first going to be named the Señors, but ended up being changed to the Raiders in 1960. Can some guy in a football helmut with eye area and swords on either side of their head be looked at offensive? The Vegas Golden Knights are coming to relax and play into the NHL this fall. Are knights an indicator of white privilege? Classist elitism? Imperialist conquering? The Crusades?

It’s all in how the thing is it, while the tall Court says additionally it is all within the bounds of free speech.

Speak Freely

The Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) had denied the Slants’ application by citing the Lanham Act. The 1946 statute that is federal trademark requests to don’t be disparaging in nature, and to avoid falsely suggesting a ‘connection with persons, living or dead, organizations, opinions, or national symbols, or bring them into contempt, or disrepute.’

The PTO attempted to make the argument that trademarks are federal government speech, as they’re qualifying by the federal agency. Justice Alito rejected that reasoning, saying, ‘It offends a bedrock First Amendment principle: Speech might not be banned on the ground that it expresses ideas that offend.’

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