The soldiers found Robert Brandel, 60, of North Tonawanda, tied up in his van on Monday in a car park in Newfane, 30 miles north of Buffalo.
Brandel told the soldiers that two men involved in his Super Bowl stalls stole $ 16,000 from him, drove him for two days and left him tied up in his van.
Investigators determined that Brandel had entered fake names in his $ 50,000 square pool in hopes of winning most of the winnings, but that he had run out of money.
Brandel was charged with fraud and falsely reporting an incident.
He could not determine if he had a lawyer to comment on.
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