3 men charged with running sports gambling ring in Md.

Oriole Park among locations where money changed hands

March 16, 2006|By NICOLE FULLER | NICOLE FULLER,SUN REPORTER

Three Montgomery County men were indicted yesterday on charges that they operated an illegal sports gambling ring in which they collected bets and made payments at Oriole Park at Camden Yards and other locations.

Federal prosecutors said in court documents that for nearly three years, from 2001 to 2004, the men solicited prospective bettors to wager on professional and college football, basketball and baseball games. The indictment alleges that they set up two toll-free numbers -- and received more than 50,000 calls -- and advertised their operation through word-of-mouth, pamphlets and advertisements.

Herbert David Meyers, 60, of Potomac, his brother-in-law Robert Levine, 69, of Montgomery Village and Levine's son, Steven Levine, 45, also of Montgomery Village, were charged with conducting an illegal gambling business and conspiracy.

Meyers and Robert Levine are also charged with several counts of money laundering.

The 12-count indictment seeks forfeiture of more than $500,000 and personal property worth about $41,000 that prosecutors said was recovered from Robert Levine's residence.

Prosecutors say that Robert Levine deposited $278,000 into his bank account in 2001 and 2002. From May 2001 to December 2002, prosecutors allege, he transferred $146,000 from the account to another account for a company in the Caribbean island of Dominica called Sports International 2000.

Bettors were directed to place their wagers with World Wide Wagering Inc., providing the gamblers with a code number, a password, a toll-free number and a Web address, prosecutors said.

In February 2003, the indictment alleges, Sports International 2000 became part of World Wide Wagering Inc.

Steven Levine subscribed to a service to receive information on various sporting events. On Thursdays and Fridays, prosecutors said, money would be collected and payments made at restaurants in Rockville and at Oriole Park.

Bill Stetka, a spokesman for the Orioles, said the team not been contacted by law enforcement authorities regarding the investigation.

nicole.fuller@baltsun.com

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