YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) — A decades-long illegal gambling business based in greater Chicago and operated by Vincent Delgiudice, also known as “Uncle Mick” was taken down, and the IRS is using it to warn others about illegal sports gambling as the NFL season kicks off.

Illegal gambling activity can result in criminal charges ranging from money laundering to tax evasion, according to the IRS.

You have to claim your winnings and you must bet through legal channels. It’s important to know who is taking your bets and where the money is going.

In the case of Delgiudice, he accepted bets from approximately 1,000 gamblers on the outcome of sporting events, including major league baseball, college and professional basketball, college and professional football, and other professional and amateur sporting events. Then, he often made bets at casinos to cover potential losses if his customers won.

Delgiudice then laundered his gambling profits internationally through cashier’s checks and cash investments in businesses. Delgiudice was sentenced in March 2022 to 18 months in federal prison and ordered to forfeit $3.6 million for money laundering and operating an illegal gambling business.

If you bet and win, you have to report that on IRS form W-2G. Keep detailed records of your gambling transactions, including bets placed, winnings received and losses.

If you are unsure of what to do, talk to a tax preparer or go to the IRS website for more information.

Sports betting became legal in Ohio this year. It was the largest expansion of legalized gambling in Ohio’s history, according to the Problem Gambling Network of Ohio. Those betting has skyrocketed and so have new cases of people seeking help for gambling addiction, with 30% primarily seeking help for a sports betting addiction, according to Meridian HealthCare counselor Stephanie Greer.