‘Accountant to the Stars’ Avoids Prison in Wayne Nix Case

Posted on: March 7, 2024, 06:39h. 

Last updated on: March 8, 2024, 11:12h.

An accountant for former minor league baseball player turned illegal bookie Wayne Nix was spared a prison sentence Tuesday for lying to federal agents.

William Fulton, Wayne Nix, Yasiel Puig, Scott Sibella, illegal gambling
A federal judge rejected prosecutors’ allegations that William Fulton, above, was an “organizer” of Nix’s illegal gambling operation and showed leniency because of his previously good reputation. (Image: The Hollywood Reporter)

William Eric Fulton, 60, is the founder and managing partner of Fulton Management, whose clients have included MMA champion Connor McGregor and Hollywood star Channing Tatum. They also included Nix, who for two decades ran an illegal gambling operation that handled bets for professional athletes.

Last July, Fulton pleaded guilty in a federal court in Los Angeles to one charge of making false statements. This related to untruthful information he provided during interviews about Nix’s operation with Homeland Security and the IRS.

Bookkeeper to a Bookie

Fulton supplied accounting, bookkeeping, and tax preparation services for Nix. He gave the bookie a $1.25 million no-interest loan to pay his gambling clients when he needed access to liquidity. He also placed bets with Nix himself and recommended Nix’s services to at least one of his other clients, according to prosecutors.

In short, defendant and the company knowingly operated as a de facto back office for the Nix gambling business, making payments, moving funds, extending financing, and conducting bookkeeping and administrative tasks that allowed the Nix gambling business to continue to operate,” prosecutors wrote in their sentencing memorandum.

Their demands for a robust sentence because Fulton was an “organizer” of the operation were rejected by U.S. District Judge Dolly Gee on Tuesday. She determined that Fulton played a minor role in the sports betting business.

Gee sentenced Fulton to one year of probation and ordered him to pay a fine of $673,290. The sentence acknowledged Fulton’s remorse and otherwise good reputation and standing.

Fulton was listed as one of Hollywood’s most powerful business managers by The Hollywood Reporter in 2015.

Scott Sibella Scandal

Nix pleaded guilty in April 2022 to a count of conspiracy to operate an illegal gambling business and a count of subscribing to a false tax return. He awaits sentencing.

Former L.A. Dodgers outfielder Yasiel Puig was also embroiled in the case as one of Nix’s betting clients. He initially accepted a plea deal that would have seen him admit to lying to federal agents, but subsequently pleaded not guilty. If convicted, he faces up to five years in prison.

Meanwhile, in September 2023, president and chief operating officer of Resorts World Las Vegas Scott Sibella  was fired by the casino for “violating company policies and the terms of his employment.”

In January, Sibella pleaded guilty to charges that could also send him to prison for five years. According to Sibella’s plea agreement, he was aware of Nix’s illegal betting operations, but still allowed him to gamble at the MGM Grand from 2010 to 2019 when he served as its president. That was a violation of anti-money laundering laws, according to prosecutors.