Resorts World Ex-President Admits Guilt in Betting Scandal


Scott Sibella, erstwhile luminary of the high-stakes hotel industry and former president and chief operating officer of Resorts World Las Vegas, has admitted his guilt before the U.S. District Court in Los Angeles. The charge, one with potentially serious repercussions, could see Sibella behind bars for a period of up to five years, and a hefty financial penalty could also cost him up to $250,000.

Sibella’s downfall was a product of his tenure as president of MGM Grand, a tenure that spanned nearly a decade from 2010 to 2019. Within that period, he made the fateful decision to allow Wayne Nix, a former minor league baseball athlete turned illicit sports-betting entrepreneur, access to gambling facilities in his casino. This was a direct breach of established anti-money-laundering legislation.

“I am pleased to have this investigation and its findings reaching a conclusion,” stated Sibella, confronting the issue with an emailed response to the Las Vegas Review-Journal. “I take full responsibility for my actions and inactions, but I must make clear I took no action for my personal benefit or inurement.” His acknowledgment came with the weight of his professional legacy hanging in the balance.

It has also come to light that both the MGM Grand and the Cosmopolitan Las Vegas, now under the corporate umbrella of MGM Resorts since its 2022 acquisition, have conceded to paying fines totalling $7.5 million in connection to the unlawful exploits of Nix.

For nearly two decades, Nix nurtured a gambling syndicate that employed ex-professionals from the athletic world to book bets, attracting clients that even included current NFL and MLB players. The illicit enterprise flourished under the friendship umbrella Sibella afforded to Nix.

During the time from August 2017 to February 2019, Sibella lavished Nix with complimentary hotel accommodations and opulent golf excursions accompanied by high-stakes gamblers and venerable MGM Grand officials. It was through these engagements that Nix expanded his network of bettors.

In the previous year, Nix himself acknowledged his role in the conspiracy and admitted to operating an illegal gambling enterprise, alongside filing a fallacious tax return. He stands to receive a sentence that could imprison him for up to eight years, with his judgment day set for March 6.

Facing his own consequential crossroads, Sibella has expressed an undeterred yearning to continue his journey within the casino industry’s ecosystem. He concluded his communication with an affirmation of his commitment, stating, “As this process comes to a conclusion, I look forward to continuing to provide my knowledge, skills and insights to support the continued growth, evolution, and professionalism of the gaming industry.”

Despite his recent turbulence, Sibella’s track record prior to Resorts World was robust. Handpicked by the Genting Group in 2019, he navigated the unfinished $4.3 billion Resorts World project to fruition, in the process enlisting the brands of Hilton, Conrad, and Crockfords, along with their extensive databases. His career graph also includes presidencies at The Mirage, and storied engagements at Treasure Island, Tropicana, and the Golden Nugget.

His departure from Resorts World in September 2023 came abruptly, merely days after informing Genting officials about the ongoing Justice Department’s investigation. The resort’s statement laid bare a violation of company policies and terms of employment, marking the end of his tenure.

While the conclusion of Sibella’s chapter in the tangible world of Las Vegas’s glittering casinos paints a sobering portrait of the risks and responsibilities inherent in the gaming industry, it is undeniable that the allure of the casino experience remains undiminished. With advancements in technology, the thrill of the casino has effortlessly transitioned into the digital realm. For those seeking the excitement of the game from the comfort of their homes, we at West Island Blog have curated a compendium of the finest [online casinos]( for this month. Engage with our hand-picked selection and immerse yourself in an online gaming experience that embodies the best of strategy, luck, and convenience.

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Santiago Contreras has a degree in economic journalism from the Universidad de los Andes in Venezuela. He also has a master's degree in communication in organizations from the Complutense University of Madrid. In his extensive professional experience, he has practiced journalism for more than 25 years in audiovisual and print media, as a journalist, editor and editor-in-chief. He was a professor of journalism, advertising and marketing at the Universidad de los Andes. Currently, he combines his journalistic practice with his work as a professional writer and communication consultant.


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