Three Sentenced in Breeders' Cup Ultra Pick 6 Scam

The "inside man" in the Breeders' Cup Ultra Pick 6 betting scam was sentenced March 20 2003, to a year and a day--the least amount of jail time for the three fraternity brothers involved in the case.

The sentencing of Chris Harn and co-defendants Greg DaSilva and Derrick Davis set in motion the process by which winners in last year's Ultra Pick 6 can be paid. DaSilva was sentenced to two years in prison, while Davis received 37 months.

Federal Judge Charles Brieant said Harn, the mastermind, could have received 70 to 87 months if he had not helped authorities. Prosecutor Stanley Okula said authorities could have made the case without Harn, but he "assisted us a great deal in bringing it to a conclusion much sooner," the Associated Press reported.

"I realize I've hurt a great number of people," Harn said during sentencing. "Forgiveness is earned, not granted, and I hope to pay my debt to society not with words but with my future actions."

The three men, all 29, have been out on bail. They were members of the Tau Kappa Epsilon fraternity at Drexel University in Philadelphia in the 1990s.

Harn and DaSilva had pleaded guilty to fraud and money laundering. DaSilva did not admit knowledge of the plan to manipulate computerized Breeders' Cup wagers but said he and Harn used the same method on two earlier bets that netted DaSilva $108,000.

Davis' lawyer argued that his client, who pleaded guilty to wire fraud conspiracy, had a minor role in the scheme. But Brieant noted Davis' wagering account with Catskill Off-Track Betting Corp. was used for the bets.

In addition to the 37 months in prison, Davis was ordered to pay $15,000 to Philadelphia Park for a scam that involved printing duplicates of winning tickets Harn detected had not been cashed. Davis said he and Harn each made $11,000 on that scheme.

In the betting scam, Harn took advantage of his position at Autotote. He discovered he could alter bets on multiple-leg wagers like the pick six after several of the races in a sequence were run. After the first four Breeders' Cup Pick 6 races were run Oct. 26, Harn manipulated the computer system to give Davis all four winners, then bet on every horse in the remaining races to guarantee a winning bet.