San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

U.S. man gets four months prison for operating sportsbook in Costa Rica

A U.S. federal court on Wednesday sentenced Frank Potolicchio, 34, to four months in prison and three years of supervised release for his involvement in an illegal sports bookmaking operation based in Costa Rica, the FBI reported on its website.

U.S. District Judge Vanessa L. Bryant in Hartford, Connecticut, also ordered Potolicchio, a Norwalk resident, to forfeit $100,000.

According to court documents and statements, after a long investigation led by the FBI Fairfield County Organized Crime Task Force, the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation unit, and the Stamford Police Department, Potolicchio and 19 other individuals were charged with various offenses related to their involvement in an illegal Internet sportsbook and illegal card gambling clubs in Stamford and Hamden that were controlled by the Gambino Crime Family of La Cosa Nostra.

“The investigation, which included the use of court-authorized wiretaps, revealed that Potolicchio was involved in a large-scale sports bookmaking operation in which gamblers placed bets with offshore Internet sports-gambling websites, particularly, based in Costa Rica,” the FBI report stated.

FBI analysis of the sports-betting website utilized by the defendants determined that the total gross revenues of the gambling operation were nearly $1.7 million from October 2010-June 2011.

On Feb. 13, Potolicchio pleaded guilty to one count of operating an illegal gambling business.

Contact L. Arias at

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