Former Seneca Nation gaming official jets around world after plea

The Seneca Hickory Stick Golf Course in Lewiston, New York. Photo from Facebook

A former gaming executive from the Seneca Nation of New York has been traveling around the world while awaiting his sentence in a fraud case.

Bergal Mitchell III, the former vice chairman of the Seneca Gaming Corporation, pleaded guilty to lying to the Federal Bureau of Investigation about his role in a fraudulent land deal. He pledged to return $338,000 in ill-gotten gains to the tribe.

Mitchell faces a maximum of five years in prison, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office. But his sentencing was delayed last year so that he could travel to Italy in order to take a cruise to Greece, The Niagara Gazette reported.

Even before his guilty plea, Mitchell was a jet setter, the paper reported. Since he came under indictment in February 2011, he's been to Florida, Alaska, Canada, Mexico and Finland, the paper said, all with the approval of a federal judge.

The case stems from the purchase of a 250-acre property that's now being used for the Seneca Hickory Stick Golf Course. Seneca Gaming paid $2.1 million for the land but the sellers only received $1.2 million.

Federal authorities accused Mitchell of diverting some of the proceeds to family and friends. But some of the money remains unaccounted for, at least according to the information that has been disclosed about the case.

Get the Story:
Former Seneca Gaming Corp. executive's sentencing delayed again (The Niagara Gazette 5/20)

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