Sports book operation uncovered |

Sports book operation uncovered

Christina Proctor

Criminal charges are being pursued against two Stateline men arrested last week on suspicion of operating an unlicensed sports bookmaking operation.

Eric Mahle, 28, and Stephen Massa, 43, were taken into custody Oct. 30 after search warrants at three different locations, two condominiums and a residence in the Lake Village subdivision of Douglas County allegedly uncovered bookmaking paraphernalia, computers and balance sheets.

Ed Yenick, supervisor of the Carson-Lake Tahoe enforcement branch of the Nevada Gaming Control Board, said investigators believe the two suspects were running sports bookmaking on baseball, football, basketball and hockey.

Yenick said the extent of the operation is still being investigated and more arrests are possible. He said right now investigators haven’t found a link between this bust and one at the beginning of April in the Elk Point Plaza in Zephyr Cove. In that investigation, five people were arrested during an afternoon raid of the office building. Charges against the defendants are still pending in Douglas County’s Tahoe Township Justice Court.

Like the alleged operation discovered at Elk Point Plaza, investigators believe the two men arrested at Lake Village took a majority of the wagers via toll-free phone lines from out-of-state callers.

There are licensed casino sports betting operations in Nevada, but they can only accept phone bets from within the state.

Mahle and Massa were released from the Douglas County Jail at Stateline on the day of their arrest. Their arraignment on the felony charges was set for Nov. 17.

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