Ex-McKeesport police lieutenant waives hearing in Operation Pork Chop gambling case

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A former McKeesport police lieutenant waived a preliminary hearing today on charges related to his role in a Mon Valley gambling ring.

Arthur Pero, 56, appeared briefly this morning before District Judge Thomas Caulfield in Forest Hills with his attorney, James A. Crosby, who declined comment.

Mr. Pero is accused of accepting bets from an undercover Pennsylvania State Police trooper inside a coffee shop run by another defendant in the case and controlled by alleged ringleader Ronald "Porky" Melocchi.

A state police investigation nabbed 16 people in Operation Pork Chop earlier this month, including several prominent figures in McKeesport and the Mon Valley.

Mr. Melocchi controlled the gambling lottery and bookmaking operation through his Glassport-based business, Back Alley Vending, according to a grand jury presentment in the case.

A formal arraignment on Mr. Pero's two misdemeanor charges is scheduled for Nov. 14.

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Molly Born: mborn@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1944. Twitter: @borntolede.


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