Fourth defendant in sports gambling case that involved Casey Urlacher pleads guilty

Matthew “Sweaters” Knight, 47, could face more than a year in prison after admitting to his role in a gambling conspiracy. Vincent “Uncle Mick” DelGiudice and Todd Blanken also pleaded guilty in the case earlier this year.

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Dirksen Federal Courthouse

Dirksen Federal Courthouse

Sun-Times file

A fourth defendant in the federal sports gambling case that once involved Mettawa Mayor Casey Urlacher pleaded guilty Monday.

Matthew “Sweaters” Knight, 47, could face more than a year in prison after admitting to his role in a gambling conspiracy. Vincent “Uncle Mick” DelGiudice and Todd Blanken also pleaded guilty in the case earlier this year.

DelGiudice’s father, Eugene “Geno” DelGiudice, pleaded guilty last summer. U.S. District Judge Virginia Kendall sentenced him to three months of home detention.

A 28-page indictment filed in the case early in 2020 alleges that Vincent DelGiudice recruited Knight, Blanken, Urlacher and others to work as agents for the illegal, multimillion-dollar gambling ring DelGiudice has admitted to running from 2016 to 2019 around Chicago. The feds say it involved as many as 1,000 gamblers.

The indictment alleged that Knight collected $500 in gambling losses from a gambler he met in Frankfort in September 2018, and that he sent a text message the next month to a gambler that read, “Morning Bronco, going through figs, can you please tell Bronco 33 to pay or play, hasn’t played since February, down 938.”

Knight and Vincent DelGiudice also discussed money owed to and by certain gamblers in October 2018, the indictment said. And in November 2018, it said Knight sent a message to a gambler that read, “Owe u 2254, will drop.”

Before Knight pleaded guilty Monday, Assistant U.S. Attorney Terry Kinney told Kendall that evidence in the case is made up of several secret recordings, as well as “surveillance evidence” of Knight meeting with gamblers, either to pay them or accept money from them.

Knight’s sentencing has been set for June 25. Meanwhile, Donald Trump decided in the final hours of his presidency in January to pardon Urlacher, brother of Chicago Bears great Brian Urlacher.

Casey Urlacher is now running for reelection in Mettawa.

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