SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO (CBS/AP) — Former battalion chief James Selvitella Jr. entered the plea this week to a misdemeanor sports betting charge.
The 52-year-old was sentenced to 18 months of probation.
Prosecutors say Selvitella handled hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of transactions a day while running the betting ring using city phones from 2006 to 2009. He allegedly solicited bets from firefighters.
Selvitella has denied any wrongdoing in a lawsuit following his firing in 2008. His attorney, Jim Lassart, says the misdemeanor conviction shows his client was not a bookmaker, but only placed bets for himself.
Three other defendants have entered no contest pleas in the case.
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