A 13-million dollar sports betting-ring that was toiling away in
Queens, as well as in other spots, has been busted up by authorities. According
to the Queens District Attorney’s office,
indictments and arrests have come down on eleven defendants, one of them a
retired New York City cop.
The D.A. alleges that former
officer Joseph R. Sophia “acted as an ‘agent’ who gave bettors access
codes, collected payments, and set limits on the amount they were allowed to
The suspected ringleaders of the operation are Michael Mildenberger, 71, and James Rossi, 49, a
“reputed Genovese crime family associate…”
The D.A. says a “wire room” in Costa
Rica facilitated the gambling. Risk-takers accessed the wire room using
either a toll free phone number or this eye-catching Web
Wagers were placed on everything from Hockey to Baseball, and ranged
from $200 to $4,000. At the North Carolina home of one defendant, $210,000 in cash was found in a safe.
This all sounds remarkably similar to another Queens gambling bust. One of the suspects is still at-large, theoretically in Costa Rica.