The Salem News
---- — DANVERS — A 66-year-old Danvers man is heading to federal prison for two years, his sentence for running an illegal online betting ring out of his former homes in Peabody and Kingston, N.H., prosecutors announced.
John Giannelli Sr. had pleaded guilty in September to charges of money laundering, running an illegal gambling operation and violating regulations of the Internal Revenue Service, which investigated the case along with the FBI.
The two-year sentence, as well as a $452,000 cash forfeiture, were announced yesterday by federal prosecutors in New Hampshire.
Prosecutors in the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Concord, N.H., where the case was heard, said Giannelli ran a website that allowed some 300 customers to make sports bets online.
An analysis of computer records recovered by investigators after a search of Giannelli’s home showed that in one 12-week period, the gambling operation generated profits of around $188,000. Prosecutors say the scheme went on for four years.
Giannelli then enlisted the assistance of one customer, who arranged to list him as an employee of his business, prosecutors said. He would send the cash from his illegal operation to that business, which would then return it in the form of a “paycheck,” to make the money appear legitimate and hide its true origin, the basis of the money laundering charge.