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Former Mohegan Sun Pocono VP Sentenced to 32 Months in Prison

- June 22, 2017 By Riley Wilson -

Elaborate casino scheme goes south as main culprits are apprehended

Former Mohegan Sun Pocono chief sentenced to 32 months in prison.

Robert Pellegrini, a former executive of Pennsylvania Mohegan Sun Pocono was found guilty for participating in a scam that cost his employer more than $420,000.

On Friday, Pellegrini was sentenced to 32 months in prison, and was ordered to make restitution to the casino for the money he and his accomplices stole.

Elaborate Scheme

51 year old Pellegrini, who was casino’s Vice President of player development until January 2016, organized an elaborate slots scam, using real Pocono casino customers’ IDs to create fake rewards cards.

With nearly $480,000 on those cards, one of his accomplices, a longtime customer Mark Heltzel, gambled and split the winnings with a beverage server at Pocono, and Pellegrini, who was the mastermind of the whole operation.

After he was arrested in 2016, 51 year old Pellegrini was charged with several offenses – theft, identify theft, fraud, conspiracy and computer trespassing – but eventually agreed to plead guilty to the charge of money laundering. Later that year, his co-conspirator, Heltzel, also pled guilty to the same charge.

An interesting thing happened couple of months later, when the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board started its own enquiry into what was described as possible operational control deficiencies at the casino.

The very next day, Mohegan Tribal Gaming Authority (MTGA) announced that Bobby Soper, Chief Executive Officer would leave the company, while Soper himself insisted that the event weren’t in any relation whatsoever.

Rebranding the MTGA

It seems the MTGA want’s to forget the whole affair as soon as possible, and has already turned to its new projects. It was announced this week that the MTGA would be rebranded under the name Mohegan Gaming & Entertainment (MGE).

Apart from Wilkes-Barre based Sun Pocono casino, MGE operates the original Sun Casino in Connecticut, and has operations at Resorts Casinos Hotel in Atlantic City. MGE has also partnered with Cowlitz Tribe on the new Ilani Casino Resort, while the new venture with Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation recently got approved.

MGE is also preparing to enter a foreign market, with its first international casino to be built in Incheon, South Korea.

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