- Woman admits to being a part of a blackjack scamming scheme and receives a one-year prison sentence
- According to court papers, Rivera and her dealer-partner Mariano stole $78,000 from Mohegan Sun
A Massachusetts woman who was caught out scamming a casino out of nearly $80,000 has been sent to jail for a year.
Marlena Rivera, 38, and a mother of seven, will see five years of probation follow the sentence that was handed down by the New London Superior Court, Connecticut.
According to the Norwich Bulletin, Rivera pleaded guilty to first-degree larceny charges, which resulted from her scheme to defraud Connecticut’s Mohegan Sun casino, allegedly working with one of casino’s blackjack dealers.
In total, the scam saw $78,000 swiped from the Mohegan Sun.
Substance abuse and criminal history
Rivera, from Southbridge, Mass., was facing up to three years in prison at her sentencing but judge Hillary Strackbein decided one year was enough in light of the facts that the woman, who’s had a long history of substance abuse, has finally been making right steps towards defeating her addiction.
However, the judge refused pleas by Ms Rivera’s attorney to completely void the prison sentence, as this wasn’t the first time she’s been involved with criminal activities.
As for Rivera, she apologized for her actions and expressed her regrets for how the whole case, which started in 2015, has affected her family.
In addition to having to serve time, the judge also ordered Rivera to repay the money she received from the ploy and banned her from entering any casinos in the state.
Rivera’s alleged accomplice pleading not guilty
Rivera’s alleged accomplice, dealer Roy Mariano, pleaded not guilty to the first-degree larceny charges and his case is pending before the court.
However, Mariano did admit to the investigators that he wasn’t happy about being moved to a part-time position and he needed extra money.
Court papers alleged that Mariano would give his partner additional chips every time she won a hand at a blackjack table.
The two were able to take out a grand total of $78,000, a part of which went to Rivera, while Mariano held on to his share. Mariano, though, denies a first-degree larceny charge.
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