North Shore butcher sentenced to a year in prison in sports betting scheme

North Shore butcher sentenced to a year in prison in sports betting scheme

A North Shore butcher was sentenced Monday to a year in federal prison for running an illegal sports bookmaking operation that raked in millions of dollars that he used to fund real estate investments, car purchases and his family’s popular wrestling gym.

Domenic Poeta, 63, who for years has run Poeta’s Italian Food Mart in Highwood, pleaded guilty earlier this year to one count each of illegal bookmaking and filing a false tax return.

Poeta admitted in a plea agreement with prosecutors that from 2014 to 2018, he used offshore betting websites based in the Caribbean to process millions of dollars in sports wagers and did not report the income on his tax returns. In all, Poeta has agreed to repay more than $1.4 million in lost tax revenue.

In rejecting Poeta’s request for probation or home confinement, U.S. District Judge Matthew Kennelly said the length and breadth of the scheme was enormous and “quite likely an undercount by a significant amount.”

“It’s breathtaking, quite honestly,” Kennelly said.

Due to the ongoing pandemic, Kennelly put off the date Poeta must report to prison until May 29, saying “things should be significantly better by then.”

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