Investigating Vegas Dave, The Most Polarizing Figure In Sports Gambling | Forbes Investigates

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When Dave Oancea isn’t earning millions flipping rare cards (or spending it on Birkin bags), he’s selling suckers pricey betting picks. Too bad it’s a losing proposition.

Oancea is not your typical memorabilia collector. Vegas Dave, as he’s known to his millions of followers on social media, is a notorious gambling influencer, known for selling picks on which team will win a given game. Vegas Dave says he’s the best “sports information consultant” in the world, but if you dig into his past and his picks you’ll find a shady hustler who sells a service that has little, if any, value for his customers.

He became well-known in the sports gambling circuit in 2015 after collecting $2.5 million on a futures bet that the Kansas City Royals would win the World Series that year. In February 2016, he also won a $2.3 million payout when the Denver Broncos defeated the Carolina Panthers in Super Bowl 50.

Despite holding the winning ticket for the Super Bowl, he couldn’t collect the full amount because the federal government was investigating him at the time. The following year, Oancea was indicted on 19 felonies related to his longstanding habit of using other people’s Social Security numbers to place wagers. In 2019, Oancea, who was represented by the well-known Vegas criminal defense attorney David Chesnoff, accepted a plea bargain. Instead of being convicted of nearly twenty felonies, he pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor, forfeited half a million dollars, and was banned from Las Vegas sportsbooks for three years.

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