One scam just wasn’t enough for former Mohegan Sun VP of Player Development Robert Pelligrini.
Already in jail for a scam involving loyalty club cards, a cocktail waitress, and a point man named Mark Heltzel, Pelligrini was arraigned for his alleged role in a 2014 Easter scam at Mohegan Sun Pocono. He allegedly rigged a contest with a $10,000 prize.
According to Wilkes-Barre newspaper the Times Leader, the casino ran an Easter promo in which patrons could pick an egg from among many other eggs and win prizes like free slots credits or money.
Pelligrini allegedly worked with two other men to make sure that Heltzel picked the $10,000 egg. He supposedly gave Pelligrini a small cut of the winnings.
Egg antics preceded loyalty card racket
According to the Times-Leader, the Easter 2014 scam was, allegedly, the first fraudulent move by Pelligrini.
The loyalty-card ruse was the second. According to multiple sources, it netted the disgraced exec and his partner, Heltzel, more than $420,000 in laundered money.
Basically, the pair worked with a cocktail waitress to get the PIN numbers of various patron’s loyalty cards. They then used those PIN numbers to transfer more than $470,000 to duplicate cards.
The cocktail waitress, Rochelle Poszeluznyj, was the one who captured the PIN numbers, according to a 2016 article from WNEP.
“When gamblers paid for their drinks with their casino card, Rochelle Poszeluznyj would copy their information and give it to a second casino employee — Robert Pellegrini.
Police say Pellegrini would then create duplicate players cards, add nonexistent money to them, and then give them to a third accomplice.”
Heltzel then used those cards to gamble. To his credit, he won himself and his two partners more than $420,000 in winnings.
The casino eventually figured out what was happening — Pelligrini and his accomplices stole nearly half a million dollars.
The court agreed, slapping Pelligrini with a 32-month prison sentence for conspiracy to commit money laundering. Heltzel received an 18-month sentence for the same crime and Poszeluznyj took a plea deal and was placed on two years of probation, the first six months of which was served on house arrest.
Scam is second to make headlines in the past two months
A dealer and his friend devised a plan in which the friend would sit down at the dealer’s table. The friend would then pass fake bills to the dealer, who would then convert that cash into chips, full-well knowing that the money was no good.
The duo ran the gag twice before casino security unraveled the pair’s secrecy and they were arrested in November 2017.
Allegedly, the friend passed $4,000 in counterfeit bills to his partner.
At the time of publishing, neither of the two men had gone to trial.