Former MGM Casino President Scott Sibella Could Face Punishment in Nevada

Former MGM Grand and Resorts World Las Vegas president Scott Sibella escaped prison last month when a federal judge slapped him with probation and fines for his part in allowing an illegal bookmaker to place bets in the Las Vegas casino. Still unknown, however, is what the state of Nevada will do to him.

The Nevada Gaming Commission can act against Sibella but has no authority to bring criminal charges. That body could levy a hefty fine, as much as $250,000, and/or suspend or revoke Sibella’s license in the state. MGM Grand terminated Sibella after the gambling violations came to light in 2023.

On at least six occasions, it’s alleged that Sibella knowingly permitted Mathew Bowyer to gamble at MGM Grand and Resorts World Las Vegas. Bowyer is banned from being in or placing bets at a licensed casino in Nevada, and other states. Bowyer is alleged to have placed and accepted bets illegally in the United States.

Federal officials were apparently swayed by the outpouring of support Sibella received. As many as 81 letters were delivered to the court vouching for Sibella, who has a career in gaming spanning more than two decades. Several of the letter-writers, which included colleagues and former employers, characterized the incident as a lapse in judgment as opposed to a pattern of behavior. Despite that support, Sibella faces the prospect of never working in the gaming industry again.

Former Clark County District Attorney on Sibella’s Future

David Roger, a former Clark County District Attorney who wrote a letter to the court to plea for leniency for Sibella, does not expect the former MGM Grand president to be welcomed back into the fold.

“In addition to being a convicted felon, Mr. Sibella will suffer collateral consequences from his guilty plea,” Roger wrote. “After his indictment, Mr. Sibella was terminated from his position as president of a major resort, and it is unlikely he will work in the industry again. Mr. Sibella’s career in gaming is finished.”

There is no timeline for a ruling, if any comes, from the Nevada Gaming Commission, but they may face pressure to be strict. Last year, the state originally exonerated Sibella, apparently after doing very little investigation into the latter. Following the federal ruling on Sibella, and outrage by some observers, Nevada now seems ready to revisit disciplinary action against Sibella.

About the Author
Dan Holmes

Dan Holmes

Writer and Contributor
Dan Holmes is a veteran writer and contributor for Gaming Today. He has written three books, including The Ballplayers: Baseball’s Greatest Players Remembered, Ranked, and Revealed, which will be released in 2024. Holmes has previously worked for the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Major League Baseball.

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