CHARENTON, La. (KLFY) Former Cypress Bayou Casino General Manager Anthony Patrone pled guilty Wednesday to a misdemeanor charge of unauthorized use of a moveable. (Less than $500)
Patrone was arrested in February, 2016 and placed on suspension following an internal investigation conducted by the Chitimacha Tribe as well as an investigation conducted by State Police.
The investigation began when LSP’s Gaming Unit received a complaint from the Chitimacha Tribe in January 2016 that a crime may have been committed by senior management at Cypress Bayou Casino.
He was fired by the Casino Wednesday following the guilty plea.
Through his attorney, Patrone issued the following statement:
“Despite erroneous and even false statements printed or aired by certain news agencies and attributed to the Louisiana State Police, Anthony Patrone has resolved outstanding charges filed by the State Police in St. Mary Parish.
These charges have been under further investigation for seven months, and they have been resolved by a plea to a misdemeanor, a $250 fine, one day’s probation, and without any admission of guilt to the original charges.
This resolution comes after Mr. Patrone’s led the Cypress Bayou Casino to two and a half years of record setting profits, a magnificent physical renovation, and a real mentor-ship program for Tribal members. The issue arose after the elected Chairman of the Tribe instructed Mr. Patrone to make a bonus payment for time that the Chairman actually did work at the Casino in 2015 prior to his election as Chairman. Even though Mr. Patrone had submitted the proposed bonus payment, in writing, to the Tribal Council through the Tribal CFO for approval, the Chairman was paid a bonus for his previous work at the Casino before formal approval was granted by the Tribal Council.
Despite what has been reported in error by some news agencies, and despite the misdemeanor plea leading to a $250 fine and one day’s probation, we absolutely maintain that Mr. Patrone did not commit any of the crimes stated in the charges brought by the State Police, and which were dismissed today by the District Attorney’s Office. When all is said and done, this was an internal administrative matter that never should have been raised in a criminal setting.
Mr. Patrone said today, “In thirty years of high level positions with top gaming companies, my time at Cypress Bayou Casino was among my best professional experiences. The successes we gained here were extraordinary and will remain with the Chitimacha Tribe for many years. I regret taking the Chairman and the elected head of the Tribal government at his word, and I was shocked to learn that officials in the Tribal government thought there might be an issue with the payment before the payment was made but did not notify me or anyone else at the Casino. However, in spite of this single incident, I remain proud of the many accomplishments we made and I thank the entire Chitimacha Tribal Council for recruiting me to the Reservation and having the confidence to allow me to proceed with such ambitious plans.”