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Former Palms employee sentenced in betting scheme

A former Palms sports book employee was sentenced to three years’ probation Monday in a scheme that defrauded the resort of $800,000.

Matthew Kidle, the last of three former Palms employees to be sentenced, was ordered to spend one of the years of probation under electronically monitored home confinement.

U.S. District Judge Jennifer Dorsey also ordered Kidle to share in the restitution of $232,231 to the Palms with other defendants.

Kidle, 31, pleaded guilty last year to one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud in the scheme to rig wagers on horse races at the Palms between 2006 and 2007.

Kidle, who came to Las Vegas from rural Michigan in 2006, apologized to the Palms and his family for his actions and said he has since turned his life around.

He told Dorsey he “lost track” of his morals when he came to Las Vegas.

His sentencing closes the book on the case.

Last month, New Jersey gambler Charles Pecchio was sentenced to three years’ probation and ordered to spend 10 months of that time on home confinement.

Michael Albanese, a former Palms sports book supervisor, was sentenced in July to a year in federal prison. Former Palms ticket writer Kassie Baker was sentenced in May to three years’ probation.

The Palms investigation, conducted by federal Homeland Security and state gaming agents, was an offshoot of an investigation into a massive illegal gambling operation run by two brothers, Michael and Jeffrey Jelinsky. The brothers, who were accused of accepting millions of dollars in illegal bets, pleaded guilty in 2009 and served federal prison time. The Palms cooperated in both investigations.

All three former Palms employees were accused of using their positions to accept invalid quinella wagers on horse races from the Jelinskys, Pecchio and others. Winning bets were paid out, and losing bets were refunded.

Contact Jeff German at jgerman@reviewjournal.com or 702-380-8135. Find him on Twitter: @JGermanRJ.

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