Norman Steinberg, considered the number three man at defunct online gambling operator BetOnSports, has been sentenced to probation after pleading guilty to a conspiracy charge in a Missouri courtroom. Steinberg, aka Tom Miller/David Norman, voluntarily left his home in Costa Rica to attend the 90-minute court appearance in St. Louis, after his lawyer said prosecutors had offered his client “a deal that was worth his coming to the US to accept.”
The sentence is remarkably lenient compared to the penalties meted out to BOS’ top two personalities. Former CEO David Carruthers is currently serving a 33-month sentence in a Missouri prison cell, while company founder Gary Kaplan was given a similarly lengthy stint in stir plus a $43.6m fine. (And PartyGaming’s Anurag Dikshit had to pay $300m to walk away with just probation on similar charges.)
The wild card Steinberg appears to have played was a mysterious civil lawsuit he’d filed in federal court in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. According to Steinberg’s lawyer, his client’s agreement to drop the suit (which had been filed under seal) “was instrumental in our ability to resolve this matter in the fashion it was resolved in,” adding that he was “prohibited by court order from saying more.”
With the conspiracy charge settled, and several other racketeering-related charges dropped, Steinberg is now free to return to Costa Rica to serve out his probation… like nothing ever happened. Which begs the queston — just what dirt did Steinberg have on the Feds? Were there some US Attorney’s names on the BOS high-roller client list? Did Steinberg have knowledge of some clandestine US operation in Latin America that would reflect negatively on the US were it to become public knowledge? Does Steinberg know who killed Kennedy? (“You bastards!” No, we said ‘Kennedy’, not Kenny.)
And what does this mean for Gregory James Haggard, the lone remaining BOS target on the St. Louis prosecutors hit list? Based on Steinberg’s experience, we strongly suggest Haggard file a sealed lawsuit of his own.