Monday, August 14, 2017

Guy REALLY gets cheated out of $100,000 casino slot machine jackpot!

Sugar Daddy got screwed...
Imagine this situation: You're with your girlfriend/boyfriend having a great time at a casino playing a slot machine with a progressive jackpot. You're the one gambling because the money being pumped into the machine at fifty bucks a pop is coming off your casino slot player's card. So while the machine is registering the monies off your card, you're smooching with your companion and you say to him/her, "You go ahead and press the button to bring me good luck." He/she presses the button and...WHAM! Bells start ringing and the slot machine screen goes berserk!
by this Russian hottie

YOU WON! A HUNDRED GRAND!

You got back all the money you lost at slot machines your entire life and then some!

Then suddenly your companion goes running off to alert casino personnel to the your win, crying hysterically out loud,"I won! I won!"

At first you don't think much of the fact that he/she said "I won!" and not "We won!" You think that he/she was simply overwhelmed by the moment, and of course you, not he/she/, would be receiving the big hundred-grand check from the casino.

WRONG!

He/she gets the check because he/she is the person who actually pressed the button on the machine. Casino law states that the person who presses the button or pulls the arm of a slot machine is the rightful winner of the jackpot, regardless of who puts the money in the machine before the button is pressed or the arm is pulled.

So if you have a bitch/asshole companion who is a greedy son of a bitch/asshole who doesn't want to give you the jackpot or at least split it with you, you're shit out of luck.

Imagine that!

Well, you might have guessed that since I'm writing this, the event depicted here actually did happen.

Yes, it did.

In April of this year at the Seminole Hard Rock casino in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, 66-year-old Jan Flato was sitting at the slot machine with his hot young Russian girlfriend, Marina Medvedeva (who is married to a guy whose last name is Navarro), when he inserted his player's card into the machine and told her to press the button for good luck.

She did, and the reels came up $100,000!

She claimed the jackpot, gave him jack shit, after which he appeared to threaten her in text messages and she played the nice innocent little girl, as if she wasn't out hustling the guy in the first place.

Well, what would you do if this happened to you?

I know what I would do!

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Two more Blackjack Cheats come clean in New Year's Eve $10,000 Casino Scam at Dakota Sioux Casino in south Dakota

Dakota Sioux Casino
It was New Year's Eve 2015, a prime night of activity for casino cheats, but this time the cheats hooked up with dealers and floorpeople and scammed this tribal casino out of ten grand. The latest pair to fall in the casino caper were a pit boss and a dealer.

Lito Banbilla Bolocon, the pit boss, has pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit theft in a gaming establishment on tribal lands. Now he faces five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. Although he probably will receive lots less prison time and a much smaller fine, he has blown his entire career for what was probably a few thousand bucks.

Same for blackjack dealer Fern Fraya Gill, who helped Bolocon devise a plan to bring in three player/agents to whom they could dump off the money at the blackjack table. She pleaded guilty to the same charge and faces the same punishment and the same ending to her casino career.

Jeremy Kris Brown, another blackjack dealer in on the scam, pleaded guilty last May, and Jordon Anthony Rondell, the "big player,"...you guessed it....also pleaded guilty to the same charge.

I don't have the details of exactly how the dealers passed the money off to their cohort players, but I imagine it was something simple such as not taking losers, paying pushes and overpaying winners.

Bolocon's job was surely to try to protect the scam, making sure no other casino employees caught on to it.

Well, somebody did, and the bottom line is a lot of people went down big-time for such a little amount of money.

Tuesday, August 01, 2017

Wynn Macau drops $10 Million on its Baccarat tables in one month. Suspicions of Cheating or Casino Impropriety?

Kosher or not Kosher $10 million loss?
Back in April, Steve Wynn's multi-billion dollar prized possession casino Wynn Macau claimed it lost $10 million on its baccarat tables. Wynn himself claimed it was the "most unique statistical anomaly in my fifty years doing this."

Even so, when it comes to the equation containing Asians plus Macau plus baccarat, eyebrows have to get raised--especially mine--and those of several emailers asking me what I think of the situation.

Well, Wynn claims that gambling junkets run by Suncity Group, one of the Pacific Rim's biggest junket operators, are what lowered the boom on Wynn's casino during the entire month of April. He said that swings in baccarat, both the good and ugly--and even insane--can be just that. And they can be.

But for an entire month and such a huge loss, that's something else.

Wynn told the press that "the bottom fell out and all the players won millions of dollars."

But what he didn't mention is that there are hundreds of super-high-rolling Asian baccarat players who can win or lose hundreds of thousands if not millions on any given night inside his casino playing baccarat EVERY night.

Which is what makes this $10 million loss so hard to swallow if it's real and unbelievable if it's not.

Robert Hannum, a professor of risk and gaming at the University of Denver, said, "The odds (of such a loss) are astronomically high," and added, "Of course black swans do occur and some might say anything can happen in the casino business."

One reason for skepticism is that this loss contributed to a significant decrease in the stock value of Wynn Resorts. In fact, shares lost 8% over a two-day period.

That is big!

My take: Well, this kind of stuff is outside my bailiwick, but I will go back to a modified version of that equation I spoke of earlier: Asians plus Macau plus baccarat=something not Kosher somewhere.

Friday, July 28, 2017

I agree with Willy Allison on the Phil Ivey/Cheung Yin Sun Edge-Sorting Case

You're right, Willy!
Over the past few years, I have gotten no less than 100 emails asking me if I view the now famous and infamous Phil Ivey/Cheung Yin (Kelly) Sun baccarat edge-sorting case as cheating or legitimate advantage play.

I have steadfastly and never changed my opinion that is in indeed cheating.

Very surprisingly, however, at least to me, is that practically every casino game-protection expert, casino surveillance director and casino-cheating expert disagrees with me. They all say that Ivey's Edge-Sorting baccarat play was honest advantage-play and Ivey and Sun did absolutely not cheat.

Well respected gaming authorities Anthony Curtis, Elliot Jacobson and Bill Zender have all stated that Ivey and Sun did nothing that constitutes cheating and that the casinos, by allowing the pair to dictate the procedure for the deal of the game, set themselves up to be victimized. So they argue that it was the casinos' own fault.

There is, thankfully, one casino game-protection expert who agrees with me. That is Willy Allison of the World Game Protection Conference. Willy and I have had our differences during the decade that has passed since my 2007 keynote speech at his conference, but this time I am solidly on Willy Allison's side.

He has stated several times emphatically that there is no doubt in his mind that Ivey and Sun cheated the casinos they victimized with the edge-sorting scam. 

With Allison now on my side, I will offer this final explanation as to why Edge-Sorting, as far as Ivey's and Sun's use of it is concerned, is indeed cheating.

If you look at the false shuffle baccarat scam, what is the difference between that and Ivey's edge-sorting?

The only difference is that the dealers in the edge-sorting did not know what they were doing while those in the false shuffle scam did.

But the key is that Ivey knew what he was doing. He was manipulating (the key word) the game without touching the cards. 

Anthony Curtis told me that since Ivey and Sun did not touch the cards, they did not  cheat.

But for Willy Allison and me, the fact that they did not touch the cards does not at all mean they did not cheat or manipulate the game. They ALTERED the casinos' dealing rules and procedures in order to gain an unfair advantage over the casino.

The false shuffle does the same thing. It gives the players involved an unfair advantage over the house. They do not touch the cards either. Only the dealer does, but the players, just like in edge-sorting, know that the game is being manipulated to their favor.

Cheating by definition is any attempt to ALTER the dealing and mechanics of a game to get an unfair advantage. For instance, if a player hypnotized a dealer to get the dealer to reveal his hole card to the player, even though the dealer has no awareness as to what's happening, it is cheating by the player. So Ivey getting the dealers to unknowingly give him an advantage by turning the cards a certain way against procedure is cheating because Ivey got them to do it by illicit means, claiming it was for good luck, etc.

All legitimate advantage-play techniques DO NOT get the dealer to willingly change their dealing habits, whether or not the dealer understands that doing so gives an unfair edge to the player.

Thus PHIL IVEY and CHEUNG YIN (KELLY) SUN are CASINO CHEATS!

Thanks again, Willy

Friday, July 21, 2017

Cheating Casino Dealer on the run in Louisiana

Scene of Casino-Cheat Crime
LaCharle LeWayne Scott, a dealer at the Eldorado casino in Shreveport, Louisiana, was peeking at the top card of her deck (I am not sure which game it was but due to the amount I assume it was blackjack), and either giving or not giving that card to her two casino-cheating cohorts, identified as brothers Hilton and Deaudra Hart. I am not sure of the sex of the dealer, but he or she has been charged of repeating this offense at least 25 times for a total cheating profit to the Hart Brothers of $23,000.

So this was quite a sizeable casino scam for a Shreveport, Louisiana casino.

Peeking at the top card by a dealers reeks of a poker scam or blackjack scam, where the dealer evaluates whether or not that top card will help or hurt her partners.

Warrants were issued for all three participants, and the Hart Brothers duly turned themselves in, with bail being set for $5,000 each.

The dealer, however, is on the run...and I'm betting she'll be caught soon...most likely in another casino gambling with her illicit casino gains.

This is another example of the huge increase in dealer-participation casino-cheat scams that have gripped US casinos the past few years.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Phil Ivey Baccarat Edge-Sorting Scam Update! Supreme Court Lawyer Calls Ivey "Robinhood."

Is that Phil Ivey?
Phil Ivey's attorneys two days ago were in the United Kingdom's supreme court to make their last effort arguing that London's Crockfords Casino must pay Ivey and his casino-cheating companion Cheung Yin Sun the 7.7 million pounds the pair won back in 2012 by edge-sorting the baccarat cards.

Apparently the arguments were both interesting and entertaining. At one point, Crockfords' attorneys likened Ivey's testimony to the Robin Hood tale, claiming that Ivey's claim that he was just taking advantage of a flaw in the casino's dealing procedure was no better than Robin Hood's reason to steal from the rich to feed the poor.

I found a good article on the proceedings here that is worth a read.

Electronic Roulette Cheating in Quebec Casino Charlevoix

Pretty Place!
Yujin Wu, an Australian national of Asian descent, arrived at the Charlevoix casino, near Quebec City, on or around June 9th of this year. He played electronic roulette and very coolly and quickly beat the game for some five grand.

Mr. Wu cashed out his winnings, seemingly without incident, then returned to the casino on or around June 22nd.

This time Mr. Wu barely got to place a bet!

Whatever plans and strategies he had to beat the casino's electronic roulette table again were quickly dashed in the form of casino security agents and police arresting him.

Apparently, Mr. Wu arrived at the casino furnished with his own electronic gear to interfere with and beat the casino's electronic roulette system. Details are sketchy at best, but evidently an internal casino investigation into Mr. Wu's initial $5,000 win produced evidence of his tampering with the game and the casino was put on high alert for his return.

Sure enough Mr Wu did return as he must have figured he had a good thing going.

Well, now he is in an electronic mess! Probably a felony one.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Did Phil Ivey and Sun Overplay their Baccarat hand during Cheat Scandal?

Could they have been more careful?
We all know the story of how poker great Phil Ivey and his feline gambling partner Cheng Yin Sun edge-sorted their way to tens of millions of dollars that are currently tied up in legal hassles across the globe between Ivey and Sun and victimized casinos.

There has long been a debate between casino-cheat whizzes and experts as to whether or not Ivey and Sun's edge-sorting technique is actually casino cheating. I, as one of those whizzes and experts, believe that edge-sorting does constitute cheating, not because Ivey and Sun manipulated the cards but rather because they manipulated the deal of the game by getting dealers to deal and turn cards that breach casino dealing and game protection rules.

But that aside, could Ivey and Sun behaved differently and avoided detection of their scam? Could they have carried it out in a better fashion?

Probably so.

You've all heard the famous saying of doom about going to the well too many times, but in Ivey and Sun's case, perhaps they went to the wells with too-big buckets. By that I mean maybe they should have been content to win a million or a half million a shot instead of going as far as ten million in a single baccarat session. Maybe the casinos would have been more convinced that theirs was legitimate baccarat play by high rollers and not so suspicious.

Well I, for one, certainly know how hard it can be to put the reigns on something so good that seems invincible and undetectable. Back when I created my famous Savannah move, my teammates and I often debated about how hard we should hit the casinos with it. We knew we would eventually take heat even though the move was virtually flawless and undetectable.

That's because sheer winning alone eventually takes heat.

So we went for the gusto just like Ivey and Sun did.

In the end, I would have to say that Ivey and Sun probably should have gone after the casinos with a little less ferocity, but I would also have to say that it would have been nearly impossible for them to make that determination. They would probably have been thinking that even if their scam got discovered, as it did, they would never end up in court, where as it now stands they have to refund their winnings.

After all, they especially could never have imagined that the courts would rule that their scam was NOT cheating but that they still had to return their winnings to the casinos.

All in all, this baccarat edge-sorting case is without a doubt is the most interesting casino-cheating case (or pseudo casino-cheating case) in the history of casinos.

Friday, July 07, 2017

Are Putin's Hackers into Cheating Casinos?

Putin Casino Hacking Center?
Interesting question, isn't it?

We've all heard the accusations against Russian President Vladimir Putin ordering his team of ace hackers to infiltrate the 2016 US presidential election, but as Putin is known to be hoarding billions of dollars in money he's taken in one way or another from Russian businesses and businessmen, is it far-fetched to believe that he's also ordered his hackers to infiltrate gambling casinos?

Nor just US casinos but casinos anywhere in the world.

I don't have a definitive answer for this intriguing question, but I certainly do have an opinion. And it's based on facts that link Russian hackers to casino scams in the past.

Most recently, a team of Russian hackers beat Australian casinos' pokies out of millions. They did this by using smart phones, sophisticated apps and even more sophisticated mathematical minds behind the whole thing.

This same hackers beat American casinos' poker machines out of millions back in 2014. It was noted that American poker machines were paying a lot more money to Russian players than they were taking in--even though there were no large payouts or jackpots.

It was also noted that these Russian players would always have one of their hands in a pocket or in a bag while playing small amounts of money and then seemingly winning every time they made a significantly larger bet.

In Australia they were known to be entering the pokie screen displays into their sophisticated apps.

So, was Putin giving the orders for these illicit poker-machine scams as well?

Well, your guess is as good as mine, but I will tell you this: NEVER put anything beyond Vladimir Putin.

Tuesday, July 04, 2017

New Bahamian Casino hit by major Roulette Chip-Color Scam

How much is each stack worth?
I am a bit late in reporting this as it happened two months ago in the end of April, but it is a significant piece of news in the casino-cheating world.

Two American casino cheats from Florida hit the new Baha Mar casino with the already infamous roulette chip-color scam, a scam scene quite often in the continental US but not seen before in the Caribbean as far as I know. That's to say I've read no reports about it until now.

The scam is simply to obtain a color of non-redeemable roulette chips at one roulette table and then bring them to a second roulette chip where those chips are put into play where the same color chips at the second table have a higher established value than they did at the first. It is always done with at least two cheats partnering up and in some cases a whole team.

At the Baha Mar in Nassau, one unnamed roulette chips bought in and played at the first table and then handed them off a stack of those chips to a second unnamed roulette cheat who played them at a much higher denomination than for what the first cheat had paid for. Details are sketchy, but according to Bahamian police the pair made off with $6,000 in profits due to the difference in chip denominations.

Their scam came apart when a casino employee noticed the first cheat subtly pocketing roulette chips on several occasions and then heading off to the bathroom, where he must have given them to his cohort.

The $6,000 scam proved to be quite expensive for the pair of Floridian casino cheats. A Bahamian chief magistrate listened to the two tell her that they were pressured from a third man to participate in the scam before she sentenced them to two years in prison each.

My take: Definitely a heavy sentence for a low-level/low tech casino scam. I guess sometimes even the Bahamians are not so mellow!