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Legendary Sports Bettor Billy Walters To Be Released From Prison

73-Year-Old Will Finish Out Sentence Under House Arrest Because Of Coronavirus Concerns In The Prison System

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The COVID-19 pandemic is going to allow legendary sports bettor Billy Walters to serve the rest of his five-year prison sentence under house arrest.

According to a report from the Las Vegas Review-Journal, Walters is expected to be released from federal prison in Pensacola, Florida this weekend. Walters has served more than three of his five-year-sentence for insider trading.

During his gambling career, Walters was considered one of the sharpest sports bettors on the planet. During his 39-year sports betting career, he only had one losing year and netted tens of millions in the process.

He will serve the remainder of his sentence in his San Diego home. He will be considered a free man on February 14, 2022.

The combination of Walters’ age and the spread of COVID-19 throughout the U.S. prison system are a key component of why Walters is being released from custody.

The passage of the CARES Act, which brought unemployment insurance to professional poker players, allowed Attorney General William Barr to release some of the older prison inmates into home arrest as the coronavirus has proven to be more lethal to the older population.

The 73-year-old was convicted in July 2017 and slapped with a $10 million fine for six years of insider trading with former Dean Foods Co. Chairman Tom Davis.

Between 2008-2014, Walters made $25 million based off information given to him by Dean about a relationship with a restaurant company that was not yet public. In a 2018 interview with ESPN, Walters blamed golf pro Phil Mickelson for the conviction.

Walters claimed that Mickelson owed him $2 million from a gambling debt. Mickelson offered up the inside information, which led Mickelson also netting seven-figures that was subsequently forefeited to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission in a 2016 civil case.

Last October, Walters appealed to a federal judge that his sentence should be cut short because of “prosecutorial misconduct.” Walters argued that the prosecutors leaked facts to the media before the trial and that those leaks caused Davis to cooperate with authorities. The judge denied his motion.