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Online Casino News - Past Online Casino Scandals: Sports Market

Past Online Casino Scandals: Sports Market

by Mira Patel, News Staff Writer

October 24 2007

If you are a fan of online casinos, then you are doubtlessly well aware that sports betting is hotter than ever. Slot machines and video poker games are perennially popular in internet casinos, but sports betting has long been a profitable niche offering at many top sites. There is little else in the world of online gambling that requires as much skill and knowledge as accurately picking the winners of professional sports matches and races. It’s a fun and potentially lucrative diversion, to be sure – as long as you are dealing with a site that you can trust. Back in 2002, a sports betting scandal rocked the online casino world, one that was so salacious that it is still told of today.

Sports Market/Aces Gold was developing quite a positive reputation in the days and months leading up to February 2002, when Super Bowl XXXVI was held. Online casinos offering sports betting were doing a brisk business in the lead-up to the big match between the New England Patriots and the Saint Louis Rams, which the Patriots were heavily favored to (and actually did) win. Something happened at the Sports Market/Aces Gold online casino sites, however, and an outrageously unrealistic line was offered for the wrong team. Online gambling fans (some of whom were Mafioso) went nuts placing bets. The odds were apparently so twisted that even the owners of a rival internet casino put money down, recognizing a sure thing when they saw it.

Needless to say, it was a catastrophe. The online casinos’ owner, Charlie Therwhanger, lost over thirteen and a half million dollars due to online gambling players’ bets, a sum which he was unable to repay. To the outrage of players, he shut down the internet casino sites with no explanation. To date, none of the entitled players from the scandal have received any money, and Therwhanger has coped with routine death threats from players who tracked down his home address.

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