The Seminole Casino Coconut Creek doesn’t think small when it holds sweepstakes.
In the past, the casino has given away a trip to space, working oil wells (not offshore) and a car a day for a total of 59 Mini Coopers.
"We’re known for our off-the-wall giveaways," said Michael Michaud, director of marketing at the north Broward casino. No kidding.
The latest offering to be handed out June 16 is Bernard Madoff’s Rolex watch valued at $10,000.
Any adult can win the watch by signing up for the casino’s free Players Club, swiping the card once a day between June 1 and June 16 and being present from 6 to 9 p.m. that evening when winners are announced.
The casino acquired the watch — and another to be auctioned at a later date — in an online auction held by the U.S. Marshals Service last year. Proceeds went to Madoff’s victims.
"He was one of the biggest Ponzi scammers ever," Michaud said. "We’re billing this as ‘Own a piece of history. We made off with Bernie’s watch.’ "
The time piece is a 1960s vintage Rolex O.P. Submariner wristwatch made of stainless steel "oyster link." It glows with luminous dots and bars from beneath the white dial.
The casino looked at the fancy sports cars once owned by another Ponzi schemer, defrocked Fort Lauderdale attorney Scott Rothstein, but elected not to bid on any.
The decision was a judgment call, of sorts, based on perceived degrees of infamy. Rothstein just wasn’t in the same league as Madoff, Michaud contended.
"There are a lot of criminals in prison selling things," he said. "We’re not really interested in Scott Rothstein. But Bernie Madoff — he committed a fraud of $50 billion. He is infamous."
All in the eye of the beholder.