Nine Arrested for Running Youth Football Betting Ring
6 months ago
South Florida police say coaches and associates bet up to $100,000 on games
Police in South Florida have arrested nine youth football coaches and associates they allege were running an elaborate gambling ring betting on little league football.
The nine are all facing felony charges in connection to what the Broward County Sherriff's Office called "Operation Dirty Play." ESPN's "Outside the Lines" uncovered betting on games that went up to $20,000 a game and $100,000 bets for championship games.
The boys playing the games were between the ages of 5 and 15 years old.
ESPN reports that six of the people arrested are ex-convicts with charges that include felony convictions for drugs, assault and theft. Each member of the ring could see up to five years in prison.
“He’s been to Florida State Prison,” Broward Lieutenant Frank Ballante said of one of the former coaches. “He’s out now, and he’s coaching youth football. So, you know what? This may be a little part of this investigation, but to us, Fort Lauderdale, City of Lauderhill, BSO, this is the beginning for us. We hope this spins up. Bivins wasn’t the only coach who has a shady past. One of the guys was convicted of trafficking cocaine. That’s a minimum mandatory sentence in the state of Florida. In 15 years, he’s out and he’s coaching youth football.”