Guilty of aiding wire transmission of illegal gambling information. Under his plea agreement, he will pay $ 100,000 to keep the West Hollenback Avenue building that houses his business and residence from being seized by the federal government.Prosecutors say payments in connection with an online gambling ring was made on Pattes Sports bar which Patte has operated for 46 years.Patte's attorneys acknowledged their client was involved in the gambling business, but said he instructed his staff not to make payments at the bar.
He gave specific instructions for all that there was to be no gambling at the bar, "said defense attorney Michael Butera.Assistant US Attorney William Houser told the court that undercover agents had placed bets on the site, collected winnings and paid losses as part of the study . A confidential informant had recorded conversations with Patte that "indicated Mr. Patte clear commitment and knowledge of the operation," Houser says.
Pattes plea agreement calls for a prison sentence in the six-to-16-month range, but US District judge A. Richard Caputo is not bound. the maximum penalty is two years imprisonment and a $ 250,000 fine.Defense lawyer William Ruzzo said he is "hopeful" Patte could get a sentence of probation because of his work for charity purpose by events linked to sportsbar.Jeg are certainly could make a good argument for it, "said RUZZO, characterized Patte as" a hard-working guy, the r doing a lot of things in society. "Patte was arrested nearly 20 years ago on the state bookmaking charges and entered a probationary program for first-time offenders. The arrest will not be taken into account when calculating Pattes federal sentence, because so much time has passed and Patte passed the program, his lawyers said .
Patte and two other men were arrested in February on the latest charges. Federal prosecutors say they seized between $ 80,000 and $ 90,000, and paper and electronic records associated with the operation of one of Pattes co-defendants, Christopher Marion of Archbald. Marion and Mark Fino, an employee of Pattes Sports Bar, has admitted Free Casino and has been sentenced to two years probation.A press release issued by the US attorney's office in March linked the arrests of Marion and Fino to an ongoing public corruption probe that has captured more than 30 people, including three Luzerne county judges and a county commissioner, since January 2009, but federal prosecutors have refused to elaborate.