Cuyahoga County

An unlucky roll: Judge sentences convicted gambler to 18 months in prison


CLEVELAND, Ohio – A convicted gambler who forfeited $1.1 million was sentenced Monday to 18 months in prison for bookmaking and placing his video slot machines in taverns, where he split the profits with the owners.

Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Judge Deena Calabrese ordered Martin Sarcyk, 63, of North Royalton to prison and fined him $10,000. It marked the second time that Calabrese sentenced Sarcyk for gambling-related offenses in 18 months.

In the earlier case, Calabrese placed Sarcyk on a year of probation in May 2013. Last April, authorities found more than $970,000 stashed in plastic grocery bags in the rafters of the attic, behind walls and in the ductwork.

On Monday, Sarcyk apologized and sought leniency, saying, "I have changed my ways.'' He apologized for violating his probation. He said he knew what he was doing was against the law, but he continued on.

"I looked the other way," Sarcyk said. "That was a huge mistake that I shouldn't have done."

Calabrese countered: "I think that if you had changed your ways when you were on probation to this court the first time, your argument would have more legitimacy with me."

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