FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT
AUSA VICKIE E. LEDUC at 410-209-4885
November 13, 2006
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MONTGOMERY COUNTY FATHER AND SON PLEAD GUILTY
TO RUNNING AN ILLEGAL SPORTS BOOKMAKING OPERATION
IN BALTIMORE AND WASHINGTON, D.C.
Bettors Make Over 50,000 Calls Made in Seven Months to Offshore Wire Room
Greenbelt, Maryland - Robert Levine, age 69, and his son, Steven Levine, age 45, both of Montgomery Village, Maryland, pleaded guilty today to conspiracy to conduct an illegal gambling business initially known as Sports International 2000 and later became part of World Wide Wagering, Inc., announced United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein. Steven Levine also pleaded guilty to conducting an illegal gambling business, and Robert Levine pleaded guilty to money laundering.
According to the plea agreements presented to the court, from March 2001 to January 21, 2004, Robert Levine and others solicited prospective bettors from Maryland, Virginia and elsewhere to place wagers on professional and college football and basketball games and other sporting events. The organization provided prospective bettors with a code number, a password, a toll-free telephone number for an offshore wire room located in the Caribbean island nation of Dominica and an internet address. More than 50,000 phone calls were received from September 2002 to March 2003 on two of the toll-free telephone numbers set up by the defendants to handle the bookmaking business.
Steve Levine managed the illegal gambling business’ offshore elements and negotiated rates and/or obtained toll-free telephone services. From March to April 16, 2004, Steve Levine managed an illegal gambling organization with a co-conspirator.
Robert Levine collected payments from losing bettors and made payments for winning wagers on Thursdays and Fridays at various locations throughout the Baltimore and Washington, D.C. metropolitan areas. From 2001 to 2002 he deposited about $279,000 into a bank account, and from May 2001 to December 2002 wire transferred $146,000 to Sports International 2000 in Dominica to cover bookmaking business expenses. As part of the plea agreement Robert Levine agreed to forfeit $53,520.82 seized from his home and bank account on January 21, 2004, as proceeds of the gambling business.
The maximum penalty for money laundering is 20 years in prison and a fine of $500,000. The maximum penalty for conspiracy to conduct a gambling business and conducting a gambling business is 5 years in prison and a fine of $250,000. Sentencing is scheduled on March 5, 2007 for both Robert Levine and Steven Levine.
United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein praised the investigative work performed by the Internal Revenue Service- Criminal Investigation and Montgomery County Police Department. Mr. Rosenstein thanked Assistant U.S. Attorneys Bryan Foreman and Emily Glatfelter, who are prosecuting the case.
This page last modifiedNovember 13, 2006