As expected, former Philadelphia Flyers hockey player Rick Tocchet was sentenced Friday to two years’ probation for his involvement in an illegal gambling operation. Tocchet, 43, who now lives in Phoenix, Ariz., pleaded guilty three months ago to counts of promoting gambling and conspiracy (see related story). Tocchet is on an indefinite leave from his position as assistant coach of the Phoenix Coyotes.
Tocchet admitted he was part of an illegal sports betting ring between September 2002 and February 2006. The ring, based in the South Jersey and Philadelphia areas, took in millions of dollars in bets from all over the country. Just two weeks ago, a former New Jersey state trooper, 41-year-old James Harney of Marlton, NJ, was sentenced to five years in prison for conspiring with Tocchet in promoting the sports betting ring.
PREVIOUSLY: According to State Police, the investigation, named “Operation Slap Shot,” revealed a sports betting system that processed more than 1,000 wagers that exceeded a total of $1.7 million on professional and collegiate sporting events during a 40-day period. Tocchet was identified by the New Jersey State Police and attorney general Zulima Farber as being the alleged partner and financier of veteran New Jersey State Trooper James Harney, who was arrested and charged with official misconduct, promoting gambling, money laundering and conspiracy.