Vegas Gambler Billy Walters Sentenced To 5 Years In Prison4 years ago
Legendary Las Vegas sportsbetting multi-millionaire William ‘Billy’ Walters has been jailed for 5 years for his role in an insider trading scheme which made him over $43million, and which involved an unwitting Phil Mickelson and Carl Icahn.
The 71-year old had faced 10 counts including securities fraud, conspiracy and wire fraud for his leading role in trading stock in Deans Food Co, using information he had received from former company chairman and Walters’ golfing buddy Thomas Davis.
Prosecutors claimed that Walters made $32 million in profit while avoiding another $11 million in losses from 2008 until 2014, and claimed that golfing legend Phil Mickelson also made $1million from tips received from Walters relating to Deans Foods stock, although the court heard that Mickelson was unaware of Walters’ inside information.
U.S. District Judge Kevin Castel described Walters' crime as "amateurishly simple" and called Walters himself "a cheater and a criminal, and not a very clever one," handing out a $10million fine as well as the five-year stretch in jail, despite pleas for leniency from many well-known figures…
Walters had become a legendary figure in the Vegas sports betting world, regularly posting yearly profits of $15million+, with a 39-year winning streak up until his first loss in 2013. He is reputed to have won $3.5million on the Superbowl and $1milion during a round of golf among many other massive bets.
He once claimed:
"If you're committed to being a professional gambler, and you want to be the best you can be, you spend every waking moment trying to figure out a way to beat the game.”
He also implied that Las Vegas was more honest than Wall Street, according to Usasportsbook.com, claiming that:
"I bought a lot of Enron stock once and I got swindled. I bought a lot of WorldCom stock, got swindled, bought a lot of Tyco stock, got swindled."
Cnbcnews.com reported Joon H. Kim, the acting U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, as saying: "Making millions in the stock market with a deck stacked in your favor leads to time in a federal penitentiary," during Walters sentencing phase.
Walters has arranged to surrender to authorities on October 10th this year but plans to appeal his conviction.
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