A Queens bowling league treasurer was indicted for stealing the league’s team dues and prize money, which he used to fund casino gambling, Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz announced today (Oct. 26).
Robert Vickers, who was arrested at his Manhattan home on the morning of Oct. 25., was the treasurer and secretary for the “Ted Guy Memorial” bowling league during its 2019-2020 season, which bowls at JIB Lanes in Flushing, Queens.
Part of his duties included collecting weekly dues from the 120-member league for a prize fund and bowling expenses. But when the Covid-19 pandemic cut the season short in March of 2020, Vickers failed to pay out members, claiming his account was frozen.
“As alleged, the defendant took advantage of not only his position in the league, but of a global pandemic to line his pockets with funds reserved for official league activities,” said Katz in a statement.
The former treasurer supposedly used these funds to gamble at casinos in Atlantic City and New York City, in addition to making expensive purchases, according to a press release from the Queens District Attorney’s office. Vickers is currently charged with stealing over $13,000 from 11 individual bowlers, said Anna Sokol, a spokesperson for the DA’s office.
He was indicted by a Queens County grand jury on counts of grand larceny, criminal possession of stolen property and scheme to defraud. Vickers is scheduled to appear in court Dec. 13, and could face up to four years in prison if convicted.
“An indictment is not evidence. It isn’t proof of anything,” said Joseph Amsel, Vickers’ attorney, in a statement to the Observer.
Update: This story has been updated to include comments from the Queens District Attorney’s office.