|When Wayne Davis, 34, of Staten Island apparently decided he was entitled to skim 10% off the takings of those winning his traditional football pool at their AT&T office in New Jersey, he was surprised to be arrested for illegal gambling.|
Ikimulisa Sockwell-Mason in the New York Post, January 11, reported that the office of Middlesex County Assistant Prosecutor Ron Kercado authorized the bust after learning that Mr. Davis had set up a 100-spot football grid for his co-workers to bet on, and speculated that Davis could have profited close to $3,000, if each box wagered was $300.
But his lawyer sees the incident quite another way. '(Mr. Davis) had collected on a few bets at $150 each -- and was actually canceling the pool because not enough folks were interested in wagering,' said John Murphy. 'Just a couple of hundred bucks were collected ...(Mr. Davis) is horrified and terrified of what is going to happen to him ... He's never been arrested. He's gainfully employed, and he's a family man.'
Mr. Murphy said the whole thing is ludicrous.
By law, Davis could get up to five years in prison for organizing the pool with the intent to skim.
But prosecutors at Mr. Kercado's office said it was likely Mr. Davis will be offered a program for first-time-offenders. The incident is likely to be erased from police records.
Kercado said running your office pool is usually perfectly legit. 'It becomes illegal when someone starts taking a percentage of the proceeds.'
A tip is not illegal, and many winners of big office pools tip the bet handler. But money from the start, off the top -- skimming -- is unreported revenue.