Roger W. (Roddy) Simkins Jr., whose home and offices were targeted by police in a series of pre-Super Bowl gambling raids two years ago, was charged by a federal grand jury yesterday with managing an illegal sports-betting operation that's took in more than $1 million in bets in three months.
The grand jury said Simkins, who once attended the Wharton School of Finance and Commerce, conspired with a Las Vegas woman in the scheme. She would telephone Simkins with point spread information on football and basketball games used to make so-called "over and under" wagers.
Simkins then used the information to accept bets in connection with "his supervision and direction of a sports bookmaking enterprise," the grand jury said in an 11-count indictment returned in the U.S. District Court.
As part of the conspiracy, Simkins also used false names, water soluble paper and quick-burning or "flash" paper to conceal his illegal activities and avoid confiscation of "incriminatinig evidence," the grand jury said.
In addition to conspiracy, various gambling charges and illegal use of the telephone to promote bookmaking activities, the grand jury also charged Simkins with failure to file wagering tax returns, a violation rarely cited in this jurisdiction.
The grand jury charged that Simkins accepted about $1.1 million in wagers in October and December 1977 and in January 1978, but failed to pay about $22,000 in federal excise taxes or file proper tax returns, failed to keep appropriate records, used ficticious names and kept a safe deposit box in a false name.
Moreover, the grand jury said, Simkins did not pay an annual $500 special occupancy tax to the Internal Revenue Service.
According to the indictment, Simkins, 33, used various locations in Washington to conduct the sports-betting operation, including 157 U St. NW. 429 N. St. NW and his home at 1701 Shepherd St. NW. The grand jury said sports-betting records were stored at the locations and telephones were used to accept bets and wagers on sports events.
The indictment recounts various telephone calls during which, the grand jury said, Simkins accepted bets.At one point, prior to the pre-Super Bowl raid in January 1978, Simkins had a device placed on a telephone at the N Street address that would signal when the line was tapped, the grand jury said. It has been reported that law enforcement authorities had used a wire-tap on two phones at the U Street address during a 13-day period in December 1977 and January 1978.
The grand jury yesterday also charged the Nevada woman, Leslie A. Poms, with conspirary and illegal use of the telephones.
Simkins is the only son of the late Roger W. (White Top) Simkins, a legendary Washington gambling boss.
In another gambling indictment, also returned in the federal court yesterday, 16 Washington and Maryland residents were charged with conspiracy in connection with the operation of another illegal numbers game.