Thursday, December 13, 2018

An old retired casino-cheat seriously ups the ante!

Louie and his fake casino chips
I am talking about Louie "The Coin" Colavecchio, the now seventy-six-year-old man who in the 1990s flooded Atlantic City casinos with high-grade $100 counterfeit chips. His casino exploits have been profiled on TV shows such as the History Channel's "Breaking Vegas" series. He ended up serving more than two years in federal prison for his counterfeiting-$100-chips crimes.

Well, apparently Louie has been up to his old tricks. He is still counterfeiting $100 items, but now it's US $100 bills, not casino chips, which is a far more serious crime than counterfeiting chips. He was arrested last Friday at his Rhode Island home and charged with possessing equipment for manufacturing phony $100 bills and actually manufacturing them. According to reports, Louie had been under surveillance for several months and his telephone conversations were recorded.

During one of those conversations, Louie purportedly said that if he were arrested he would claim he was working as a counterfeit-bill detection specialist LOL. He also purportedly said that he had developed technology that could replicate US currency security features including how genuine bills react to UV light.

Louie, who was already serving 7 years of a suspended sentence for possessing more than 5 kilos of marijuana, could be looking at some serious time if convicted on these new charges.

In fact, the next thing he may be counterfeiting is "Get out of jail free" cards.

Saturday, December 08, 2018

Robert Asiel's Casino Cheat Memoir "The Unexpected Gambler"...Any Credibility?

Credible Cheat Tales?
Back in April of this year, Robert Asiel released his self-published book "The Unexpected Gambler," in which he claims casinos rampantly cheated customers and explains how they did it. He then goes on to detail his own cheating moves that he used against these very same casinos, claiming that his moves are still being used today on casino blackjack tables.

Is there any credibility to this book and Asiel's claims?

Frankly, I don't know. I have been in and around casino cheating for 40 years, 25 as a top professional casino cheat and the better part of the last 15 as a game protection training consultant helping casinos protect themselves against all levels of casino cheats. Yet I never heard of Robert Asiel before I stumbled upon his book on Amazon.

I will say this for starters: Asiel supposedly began his casino career as a casino dealer in a legitimate Nevada casino and then became a "crossroader," which is the casino vernacular for cheat. Inasmuch as that goes, his career is very similar to mine up to a point. That's to say that I began my casino career as a dealer in a legitimate casino before becoming a casino cheat.

So, not having heard of Mr. Asiel, I went online and did some research. I came upon accounts of his involvement with Louisiana mob figures in a long-ago card-marking scam that beat the President Casino in Biloxi, Mississippi for $500,000. It is not clear exactly what Asiel's role was in this card-marking scam, but it appears it might have been limited to being a connecting contact to some of those who carried out the scam by sneaking the marked cards into play. I do not know if Asiel was a player taking down profits once those cards were in play.

I do not have any other accounts of his cheating. No pastposting, capping or pinching scams.

I have not read the book, and I am not sure I will, but I have spoken to several people who have. In spite of the raves for Asiel's book on Amazon, the general consensus among seasoned casino people who have read the book is that they believe Asiel participated in the marking-card scam, which took place in the 1990s, but find his tales of legitimate US casinos rampantly cheating customers far-fetched.

Thursday, November 29, 2018

Interesting Baccarat Dealer Cheating-Case in Australia...Another Big Inside Baccarat Cheating Scam at Australia's Crown Casino Melbourne

Accused Baccarat Dealer Cheat
Supposedly it came to light during the Crown Casino's routine review of its big baccarat winners. The group of winners in question won some $430,000 during several baccarat sessions last April and May. Then the suspected dealer was taken to the casino's back room and interrogated. As is normal procedure, or at least what should be normal procedure, the interrogation of the dealer was recorded.
The dealer's attorney then requested access to the audio tapes but was told by the head of Crown Casino's investigation unit that the tapes no longer exist. 
Finally, the shit hit the fan!
The scam itself, although not detailed, supposedly has the dealer informing a group of players what the cards were before the deal so that they could bet accordingly. Surveillance operators claimed they noticed the dealer lifting and shifting the cards before he dealt.
In any case, this is one of the most complicated cases of baccarat cheating I've yet heard of.
Here is the related news article that appeared in the Sydney Morning Herald.
The head of investigations at James Packer’s Crown Resorts says audio recordings from a “holding room” used to interrogate an employee who allegedly scammed the casino giant out of more than $400,000 no longer exist.
In the high-roller Mahogany Room at Crown’s flagship Melbourne casino last year, baccarat dealer Michael Huo is alleged to have looked at cards and informed his associates – card players Fiona Shum, Yixuan Cui and Ke Wang – which cards were about to be dealt, helping them win $431,000 across 58 hours of playing at his table in March and May.
Mr Hou came to the company's attention during a “routine” review of the previous day's 10 biggest winners, including examining CCTV footage of their betting and pulling up data on their betting patterns.
Crown’s internal investigators arrested Mr Huo and his co-accused on the night of May 1, when the three women were playing at his table. Mr Huo was detained for more than three hours in a “holding room” before police arrived, the Melbourne Magistrates Court was told.

Defence lawyers have sought access to a logbook of the personal audio devices worn by the casino’s security and investigations staff on the night of the arrest, as well as audio and visual recordings of the interrogation of Mr Huo, and copies of text messages sent and received by investigators during the interrogation.
Peter Haag, representing Mr Hou, said Crown was refusing to comply with court orders to produce evidence and on Monday subpoenaed Crown’s investigations manager, Jason McHutchison.
“The orders of the court last time were not complied with,” Mr Haag said, “and the subpoena endeavours to obtain the materials that were the subject to the court orders last time by a different route.”
Mr McHutchison said his text messages were cleared when he replaced his smartphone late last year because he “didn't think they contained any evidentiary value”, while an audio recording from the holding room that day had since been deleted, because a request was not made for it to be preserved within 14 days.
“It wasn’t requested in the time frame,” he said. “It’s no longer in existence.”
Defence lawyers also sought a logbook of personal recording devices worn by Crown staff on the night, and copies of those recordings.
But Mr McHutchison said the logbook did not contain relevant information and did not produce it. He also said the “only recording I was able to obtain was my own”. “The rest cannot be found,” he said, adding that one had malfunctioned on the night.
Daniel Harris, the former senior surveillance analyst at the casino, said it was Crown’s routine practice to conduct a review of CCTV and internal betting data for the top-10 winners each day, to “see if they are legitimate”.
Mr Harris said surveillance footage showed Mr Huo spending an unnecessary amount of time straightening and handling cards.
“The front few cards could be seen to shift slightly and were leaning over the deck,” he said.
The hearing before Magistrate John Bentley continues.

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

5 Best Gambling Books


Bestselling Gambling Book
If you’re a reader and a casino fan, there 5 books are good reads. But, if you’re a gambler and you want to improve your gambling skills, then these books are a must. Some of these books are actual autobiographies, some are biographies and some are fictional but with a lot of research done on the subject. Nevertheless, you will learn a lot about gambling, the life of gamblers and most importantly, the tips of real pro gamblers.


Bringing Down the House – Ben Mezrich
If reading is not your strongest suit but you’re still interested to know what this number one gambling book is about, you can watch the equally popular movie. It is actually quite an interesting book that narrates the true story of a group of MIT students that decided to bring down the house by counting cards in blackjack. Thanks to their brilliant, genius minds and exceptional MIT math skills and knowledge, they started training as a card-counting team, with the sole aim of winning over the house and make millions, which they eventually did.

Gambling 102: The Best Strategies of All Casino Games – Michael Shackleford
This book is more of a beginner’s guide to the casino games strategies. However, the author supposes that you have a previous knowledge of at least the basic rules of the games and gradually teaches you how to improve your odds of winning. The author is a statistics and mathematics expert analyst, so the book is based on real statistics made over years of study and experience. Essentially, you will learn about the house edges and the best strategies that can be used for winning at online casinos.

Beat the Dealer – Edward O. Thorp
Although quite an old book, Beat the Dealer is definitely not a book to be underestimated as it is actually the first book that proved the ancient myth – that you can use card-counting to win over the house. As a mathematician, Edward O. Thorp proved that mathematically speaking card-counting is real. In fact, the entire book is scientific, with equations, charts and all, and it served as the beginning of the card-counting movement, inspiring many authors to keep digging into it.

The Professor, the Banker, and the Suicide King: Inside the Richest Poker Game of All Time – Michael Craig
Michael Craig did a fascinating job in capturing the world of the high-rollers, the huge bets and the lavish lifestyle of big-time gamblers. It actually tells the story of a billionaire banker Andy Beal, determined to beat the most skilled poker players at their own game of choice. With detailed descriptions about the secrets of the poker strategies, Craig skilfully combined a good story with a useful gambling material.

Blood Aces – Doug J. Swanson
You must have heard about the World Series of Poker, but do you know the true story about its creator, the mob boss and casino owner Benny Binion? Well, if you're interested in having a peek into the world of mobsters and their notorious lifestyle, you must read this book, with a gangster movie dynamics.

Friday, November 23, 2018

Game Protection Robots Cruising Casino Floors...Are They Coming Soon?

Can "Buddy" catch casino cheats?
For those of you who missed it, the Pechanga Casino near San Diego, California has debuted roving security robots that patrol the casino, or at least areas near the casino such as the hotel lobby and hallways, in order to give casino guests more security and, even more important, a sense of more security and being as safe as possible.s

This brings an interesting question. These robots (for now) are more of a security apparatus than a game protection one...but will we ever see robots patrolling the actual casino floor looking to spot cheats, advantage players and even scams in progress?

Honestly, I don't know. The first thing that comes to my mind is: even if these robots were equipped with enough cameras and artificial intelligence to perform such a vital game-protection task, would they be able to walk themselves around a casino floor without getting in everyone's way?

I mean, picture a crowded Vegas casino on New Year's Eve, which happens to be the annual preferred working-night of professional casino-cheating teams. Forget about the angst those professional casino cheats would feel at the sight of robotical armies honing in on their scams and then one of them rolling right up to their roulette table and in a metallic-pitched robotical voice saying, "You guys are caught cheating"!...what about the regular players only wanting to grab a seat at a slot machine or blackjack table who might be bumping into these strolling robots? Sure, it might be fun greeting and taking selfies with a robot or two in the middle of the casino as long as it doesn't interfere with the gambling.

So just the mechanical driveability of the robots might pose a difficult problem to solve.

But beyond that, would digitally-equipped-video robots on the casino floor actually help casino surveillance departments identify cheats and spot their scams going down?

I must say it would be possible. Although I have never been a big believer in the usefulness of facial recognition technology in casinos, if it were directly put to use right on the casino floor, I might be convinced otherwise, especially if the robots zeroed into a face of a suspected casino cheat and zoomed in, then compared the contours of the face with an existing casino-cheat data base. In that scenario the robots could help.

But what about detecting a scam going down without any facial-recognition leads to the cheats being there, or more specifically, being at a table in set-up or operation of their cheat moves?

That remains to be seen. Of course these robots could be programmed to recognize tells of professional and sophisticated casino-cheat teams, but wouldn't a skilled human being with knowledge in those tells have to do the programming?

Of course he or she would.

And that's where these robots, named "Buddy" at the Pechanga, might fall short...though by no fault of their own! 

Friday, November 16, 2018

Another Connecticut Casino Insider Scam nets Cheating Dealer Probation

Mohegan Sun...More insider cheating
The player/agent, who had previously worked at the same casino for nearly two decades, got a year in prison.

It all happened on the blackjack tables at the Mohegan Sun casino, and like nearly always, it was a rinky-dink scam where the dealer, fifty-five-year-old Roy Mariano, simply overpaid the player, Marlene Rivera, many times when she won her hand. According to accounts I have read on this, there was nothing more than that going on. And their total take was nearly $80,000!

Imagine that...a simple overpay-scam taking down eighty grand! I don't know how long they were running it, nor do I know why the casino's surveillance department didn't catch it quickly, assuming that it went on for awhile. I mean, they had to be doing this for at least heavy green and black-chip action to get that kind of money out off  the tables.

It is just truly amazing all the insider scams that have happened at the two major Connecticut casinos over the years, the other of course being Foxwoods. I am not going to blame table-games staffs, nor am I going to blame surveillance departments. I guess the reason for this must be related to the simple fact that these two casinos are huge in size and congruent high-action, and cheating from the inside for several hundred dollars or a few thousand per night just stays under the radar.

Perhaps more details about this scam will emerge. If they do I will keep you posted.

Thursday, November 15, 2018

2019 WGPC SPEAKERS: THE RELEVANT, THE IRRELEVANT AND THE RIDICULOUS

Willy Allison has recently published his list of speakers/presenters for the 2019 World Game Protection Conference in Las Vegas. Despite my animosity toward Willy and other people closely associated with him and the WGPC, I will do the best I can to give an unbiased opinion of the 2019 WGPC lineup. Doing this is a rather difficult chore as I don't want to give Willy any free publicity but at the same time I do not want to discourage people from coming to his conference.

So, that said, let's get started.

WILLY ALLISON: Sorry, I cannot be unbiased here, so I must let this one go.

ANTHONY CLARK: I met Anthony in 2017 when I trained his surveillance department at the Soaring Eagle casino in Michigan. I found him to be bright, knowledgeable and personable, and most important, eager and willing to learn. I am sure he will be an interesting presenter and do a fine job. RELEVANT

DARRIN HOKE: I briefly met Darrin a few times over the years at the WGPC, which I keynoted in 2007, and at the G2E in Las Vegas. He is clearly well-rounded in all aspects of surveillance and game protection and has lots of knowledge to impart. RELEVANT

BILL ZENDER: When it comes to the numbers of table games, casino promotions, etc., Bill is your guy. I do not, however, consider him to be an expert in casino-cheating. RELEVANT

SAL PIACENTE: Sal does the work, that's for sure, and keeps up with all the current scams. However, he has made some comments that lead me to believe his innate casino-cheating knowledge is not as strong. He sent me an email a few years back calling my notorious Savannah roulette-cheating move "a rinky-dink pinch move." Others in the business, including past speakers at the WGPC, have called it the best cheating move ever. Lots of people believe that Sal is an ex-casino cheat. That is not true. Sal has never cheated in a legal gaming establishment. He told me so himself. I am not praising or berating that fact. RELEVANT

JOHN UNDERWOOD: I trained John's staff at the Hard Rock Casino in Tulsa last July. John and his staff were very attentive, and he and his more experienced people had very significant knowledge on game protection, including that for roulette with roulette balls and craps with dice, which is just a few months old in Oklahoma. John has a youthful spirit and great attitude and will be a big plus at the WGPC. RELEVANT

GEORGE JOSEPH: If you want dinosaur game protection, George is your guy. RELEVANT

TONY STONE: I never met Tony, but we did have a series of extremely long and somewhat argumentative emails about my articles condemning Willy Allison. Although Tony's opinion sided with Willy more than me, our conversations went way beyond that dispute. While writing back and forth about several game protection topics, I found Tony to be one of the most knowledgeable people in the field. I am sure you will find his presentation current and interesting. RELEVANT

JOE NAVARRO: Although I respect Joe's knowledge and credentials, I feel they are more suited to terrorism than they are to game protection. I severely criticized the WGPC for its focus last year on the Las Vegas Massacre, and I will never be sold on body language analysis being integral to casino game protection unless it has to do with cheat-team communication, nor do I think the threat of terrorism inside casinos is as great as the WGPC makes it out to be. IRRELEVANT

DREW PORTER: Specializing in "Full-spectrum zero knowledge"...The key word here is "zero" and that's about the extent of the relevance this stuff has to game protection. IRRELEVANT

KERRY BUBOLZ: The Golden Knights are a great story and inspirational after the Las Vegas Massacre, but of course this has nothing to do with game protection. IRRELEVANT

EDWARD PRIMEAU: The science and technology of audio and video forensics can indeed be important to casino investigations encompassing several crimes, including cheating at the tables. RELEVANT

MICHAEL PRIMEAU: Like father like son. RELEVANT

JOSH DAVID: I would bet a million dollars to win a dollar that I could walk into any crowded casino in the world on a Saturday night without a disguise and be recognized by exactly zero super-recognizers. All this facial recognition stuff is great in close quarters and one-by-one or small-group entry but not when you have throngs of people entering casinos with their heads tilted in various positions. IRRELEVANT

MICHAEL ROZIN: Willy Allison tweeted his support for software that could predict which angry losers at the gaming tables might go back to their rooms, get their AR-15s, and come back into the casino blasting away. That was rubbish and so is any more talk of predicting who will turn into casino mass-murderers based on their casino play and actions, Mr. Rozin notwithstanding. RIDICULOUS

JIM DOWLING: Money laundering is certainly important to casinos and being able to detect it can lead to putting some serious criminals out of business and into jail. If solid casino cage policies are instituted and employees trained in this, even professional casino-cheat teams can be thwarted. When I train casinos, I show how strict anti-money-laundering procedures in place at casinos can be a major factor in catching the best professional casino cheats. RELEVANT

MIKE WAITE: Obviously a well-rounded surveillance professional with lots of experience. His presentation will be useful. Teamwork in catching casino cheats is essential. RELEVANT

ROBERT KRAUS: Robert is no doubt extremely qualified in his field, and by reading up on him I have found his contributions to the protection of gaming facilities exemplary. However, I think his expertise is much more relevant to the outside protection of casinos, not to the table games and slot machines inside. IRRELEVANT

BRIAN LOPEZ: As previously mentioned, anything concerning money laundering in casinos is relevant. What I didn't mention above is that drug gangs have been laundering money in casinos for years, especially in Las Vegas. RELEVANT

MARVIN SZUKALOWSKI: Nothing can be more important than surveillance's role in the future of game protection. But what is missing at the WGPC (nothing to do with Marvin) is the importance of table games departments' role in the future of game protection. I constantly stress at all my training sessions that the two departments MUST work better together and as an efficient team in order to have any chance of stopping high-level cheats.

Okay, there you have it!

I must admit that this year's WGPC is much more relevant to casino game protection than last year's, where Bill Zender was called a "hybrid" game protection specialist, whatever the hell that means, and the term "critical non-verbal vigilance" and other tongue twisters were used to describe irrelevant presenters.

Hey, guess what?

Maybe Willy Allison is listening to me...a little!

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

A Game Protection Dinosaur

The Boxman...A lost breed
No, I am not talking about George Joseph (excuse the joke but he does refer to himself as a game protection dinosaur), but rather about a game protection dinosaur that George Joseph indeed knows very well.

Yes, I am talking about Las Vegas craps boxmen, who have more or less been gone for a decade now. Of course 10-years-gone doesn't yet qualify them as extinct, but in Vegas lore that is indeed becoming the case.

There has been a long debate in the casino industry about whether the demise of Las Vegas boxmen is a positive or negative for casinos' bottom line. The argument pits game protection people against casino finance executives and accountants, or should I say bean counters?

The game protection people of course argue that cutting out the  boxmen hurts that very protection of games and makes craps more vulnerable to cheating scams, both from the outside and those from the inside that involve dishonest craps crews who take advantage of boxmen's perpetual absence.

The finance executives and accountants say that the 3-man craps crew of two dealers and a stickman can adequately observe and protect craps tables just as well as they did in the era of boxmen. Therefore, boxmen were expendable and cutting their salaries more than made up for losses to cheats taking advantage of one less set of eyes watching the craps games, albeit an extremely important set of eyes.

Okay, which side do I take? I bet you can guess.

True, the reduction of salaries is certainly black and white and does reduce payroll.

But on the other side, the game protection side, things are not quite as clear. From a cheating point of view, I, for one, can attest to the huge increase in vulnerability to cheating that craps games have without the boxmen sitting on duty. The first casino area I ever noticed not sitting boxmen was Reno and Lake Tahoe, Nevada. And I first saw the boxmenless tables there in the early 1980s.

And boy did our cheat teams make Reno and Lake Tahoe pay! We bombarded all the casinos in those two Nevada gambling-hot-spots with purple check pastposts, sometimes for as much as $5,000 per move, pastposting both the pass line and the odds simultaneously. We didn't even need a distraction because there was no one there to be distracted. The stickman was always busied following the dice and placing the prop bets and the two base dealers, normally refusing to hawk the opposite end of the table (which is proper adherence to game protection), could never see the cheat moves going down there.

It was as easy taking those speckled purple checks off the craps tables as it is taking red and white candy canes from a baby, thus my point on cheating boxmenless craps from the outside.

So what about craps-cheating the same tables from the inside, by wise and dishonest craps crews who appreciate the existence of boxmen--or should I say non-existence of boxmen?

Need I remind you all of the infamous Bellagio Casino hopper scam that took place between 2012 and 2014, just a little while after boxmen began disappearing from Vegas craps tables? For those of you unfamiliar with a craps hopping scam, it is basically nothing more than players calling out verbal bets (hopping bets) before or as they are putting their checks on the table. The craps crew is then supposed to place the chips on the called-out number as soon as possible, before the dice are rolled.

Well, in the case of the Bellagio scam, the dishonest craps crew of three, a stickman and two dealers, simply placed the hopping chips on the number that was rolled, not the number that was called out or hoppped. This ridiculous amateurish scam went on in the Bellagio, a major Las Vegas Strip casino, for more than a year to the tune of $1.5 million without anyone not involved in it noticing.

Not even surveillance had a clue!

So who finally noticed it? I'm told it was another dealer not involved who wanted to be just that...involved. He supposedly approached the crooked threesome and demanded to be cut in on the scam, and those three cheating dealers were obviously as rudimentary as their scam was--they refused--and kept on cheating with the knowledge that another dealer who wanted in and was denied was on to everything!

So no surprise that the jilted dealer dropped the dime on the three dealer-cheats who eventually were all convicted of felonies and sent to state prison.

I firmly believe that had boxmen been present at the Bellagio during that time, the scam would never have come off, or at least it would have been much less costly if it did come off and a boxman was in on it. That because the crew would have had less opportunities to cheat in light of the fact they had to occupy all four crew positions around the craps table.

And what about the sliding-dice scams, today's modern craps table scourge? Sliding dice were mainly the responsibility of boxmen who more than not never let the dice out of their sight. So without them there, skilled dice-sliding teams who are capable of simulating a legitimate tumble with an illegitimate spin can easier get off their sliding scams.

And there's still another negative element the casinos' financial guys never take into account when arguing to get rid of boxmen...mistakes.

Mistakes! Dealers at craps make them more than dealers on the other table games. No doubt. Why? Because craps is by far the most complicated game to deal, so even craps dealers with tons of experience make errors on the payoffs.

And who do you think is there--or was there--to spot the errors and inform the dealers so they could be corrected?

You're right!...the boxmen.

But you know what? There's one element about the boxmen's disappearance that for me has even more significance than the game protection loss. That is simply the loss of ambience. For me, Las Vegas boxmen were a symbol of the action throughout the whole casino, the entire town. Perhaps as well a symbol of the showy machismo that Las Vegas craps games brought to the otherwise dry desert. Just the image of boxmen settling disputes, calming irate gamblers down, smiling at the attractive women, or the fancy way they rotated a die in their hands before examining it after it flew off the table, making sure it was the same die that had flown off the table and not a loaded one that may have been switched into the game by a cheat. The whole process of an experienced boxman examining a die was nothing short of a Las Vegas ritual. And I miss that.

So now that we are getting more and more into the boxmenless craps era in Las Vegas, you know how I feel about it.

How 'bout you? Do you side with the game protection guys or with the bean counters?

And one final thought: Just think that casinos in Las Vegas used to sit two boxmen, one for each side of the table, on jammed-up high action games!

What does that tell you about boxmen's true importance to game protection?

Thursday, November 08, 2018

Widespread Insider Employee Cheating Rocks Mark Twain Casino in Missouri

Lotta employee cheating going on!
Talk about brazen if amateurish casino-cheating scams!

The Mark Twain Casino in La Grange, Missouri certainly had its share.

According to accounts, the Missouri Gaming Commission is proposing a $50,000 fine for the casino for having allowed blatant cheating violations over an eight-month period between December 2016 and August 2017.

That's a long time!

It seems that the cheat scams, involving dealers, supervisors and pit managers, revolved around the casino's craps tables, where we have seen a sharp increase of insider employee scams, most notably the recent $1.4 million hopping-bet scam at the Bellagio in Vegas.

Just like that scam, which unbelievably occurred without interruption over more than a year, the Mark Twain scams were relatively simple, even ridiculous at that. The dealers, in collusion with their supervisors and pit bosses, allowed players to cap, pastpost and change their bets at will, either after they already won the bets or were in a favorable position to do so. It went to flagrant extremes such as the dealer calling a "no roll" on the thrown dice if they crapped out against the players.

There are two amazing things about the scam. The first is that the whole thing seemed carried out only to collect tips from the beneficiaries of the cheating. Unless those tips amounted to at least half the profits, these casino employees were risking their careers for virtually chump change.

The second incredible thing that hits home with this scam is: where was surveillance? Unless they were in on it, which does not appear to be the case, how could this go on for eight months without someone from surveillance catching on to it through routine reviews and observation.

In all, three employees were fired and arrested. A table games supervisor and pit manager have already pleaded guilty and received probation, community service and lifetime bans from casinos in Missouri...pretty light sentences for a continuing criminal enterprise, I would say.

My take: This relative amateurish scam scenario is just more plain evidence that table games dealing-procedures must be adhered to and stressed over and over again via repetitive training. Same thing goes for surveillance.

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Poker Cheating at Charity Events...That's Bad!

Cheating Charity Poker...Bad!
Have you ever wondered about people cheating in poker games that are run by and for charities? Does it happen? Are there people out there who would actually do this, especially if their cheating would affect monies earmarked for helping those people who are suffering and depend on charities to make ends meet and get by?

Well, I hadn't thought about this until I read an article about an Indianapolis charity poker room being under state investigation. That certainly got my attention.

A poker room run by the Northside Knights of Columbus that generated some $4 million in player rakes but only showed a profit of $150,000 is being investigated by Indiana State officials, who were apparently tipped off by an angry player who'd been barred from playing there.

The first question is why was that player barred. Was it for cheating? Or was it for being drunk or some other disorderly conduct? According to some newspaper accounts, the state is investigating only minor issues such as not properly displaying rules signs and allowing players to tip the dealers, which is prohibited by charity gaming regulations dictated by Indiana law.

However, most people, me included, do not buy that this is some kind of investigation into minimal violations of gaming law, especially with the knowledge that just last year another charity poker room in neighboring Fort Wayne was cited for giving only a small percentage of its revenues to the charities it represented.

I don't know exactly what's going on at the Northside Knights charity poker room, but I do know this: someone is cheating. It could be the players, the organizers or both.

I'm gonna say it's probably both!