Gambling on the Super Bowl is technically illegal in most states, but you're not likely to land you in jail unless you decide to fake your own kidnapping when you can't pay out on bets.
New York State police arrested Robert Brandel, 60, of North Tonawanda after troopers discovered him tied up in his blue Ford F-150 truck Feb. 27 near Buffalo. Brandel was found with a rope tied around his neck, securing his head to the head rest. Duct tape was also found wrapped around his hands and ankles.
Troopers say Brandel spun them a tall tale about two men he picked up in his truck on Feb. 27 because they had placed bets in a Super Bowl pool he was in. Brandel says they flashed a pistol at him, and stole $16,000 in cash he had won from the payout of the pool. He claimed the pair then forced him to drive around various places in western New York, eventually leaving him in the Tops parking lot where state police found him.
However, troopers quickly figured out that things were not as they appeared after a quick investigation of Brandel's story.
"Further investigation and interviews revealed that this elaborate story was fabricated," state police said in a statement.
As it turned out, Brandel was running a $50,000 payout Super Bowl pool using several fake names in the hopes of winning most of the money. However, the game didn't go the way the North Tonawanda man thought, leaving him on the hook for most of the $50,000.
Brandel was arrested and charged with first-degree scheme to defraud and falsely reporting an incident. He's due in Town of Newfane Court in March, according to police.
Photo: New York State Police