Ex-FBI Agent, Who Allegedly Gambled With Public Money, Wants At-Home Sentence

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Ex-FBI Agent, Who Allegedly Gambled With Public Money, Wants At-Home Sentence

A former FBI agent who allegedly used $13.5K in federal government money to gamble at Las Vegas’ Bellagio casino was sentenced Wednesday to a 90-day term. The prosecutor and defense attorneys wanted him to get probation with no prison time.

The Bellagio in Las Vegas
The Bellagio in Las Vegas
The Bellagio in Las Vegas, pictured above. It was the site of an FBI agent allegedly using public funds to gamble in a high-limit room. (Image: TripAdvisor)

US District Court Judge Gloria Navarro rejected their recommendations and sentenced Scott Carpenter, 40, of New York, to three months. Carpenter’s attorney has requested the time be spent at Carpenter’s residence rather than in a prison, according to the Las Vegas-Review Journal.

Within 90 days, the judge will rule on the request for an at-home sentence. She could send him to a correctional facility.

At this week’s sentencing hearing in Las Vegas federal court, Navarro scolded Carpenter, saying his action “undermines the community’s trust in law enforcement.”

In February, Carpenter plead guilty to a conversion of government money charge. It is a misdemeanor, rather than a more serious felony.

Carpenter faced a maximum penalty of one year in prison, a period of supervised release, and required restitution of the money.

High Limit Room at Bellagio

It was in 2017, when Carpenter allegedly used $13,500 of government funds and played blackjack at the Bellagio’s high limit room. He typically wagered over $700 for each hand, the Review-Journal said. The money was lost at the gaming table, the report added.

Officials have revealed the spent money was part of the $135,000 budget given to FBI agents to investigate alleged public corruption. Some of the allotment was to pay for four agents’ expenses in Las Vegas between July 27 and 31, 2017.

Other funds were to pay for fake bribes to the targets of the government inquiry. The bribes would then be used as evidence to prosecute the suspect or suspects. Prosecutors have not announced who was the target of the corruption investigation.

One of the agents portrayed a high roller during the undercover operation. Agents also booked a cabana at The Cosmopolitan.

The casino requires cabana guests order at least $1,500 in meals and drinks. Carpenter allegedly consumed a six-pack of beer and most of a bottle of vodka while there, the report said.

After the illicit use of the cash, Carpenter let officials know what he had done. He began an effort at restitution, the Review-Journal said.

Carpenter also acknowledged making an error, but has since undergone treatment. He has left the FBI. Now, he is a “better, smarter and more self-aware person,” the report added.

PTSD

Defense lawyers said Carpenter suffered from post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). He had served with the US Army’s famed 82nd Airborne Division during two tours of duty in the Iraq War.

Also, Frank Carpenter, the defendant’s father and a New Jersey judge, wrote to the Las Vegas judge that his son was drinking because of the PTSD and should be given leniency.

The same country that exposed my son to PTSD is now punishing him for exhibiting symptoms of PTSD,” Frank Carpenter’s letter said, the Review-Journal reported.

The incident was investigated by the Department of Justice’s Office of Inspector General.

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