Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Casino/Gambling Cheating Turkey of the Year!

Now that it's Thanksgiving, the time is right for my first annual Casino/Gambling Cheating Turkey of the Year. In order to qualify, candidates must satisfy three main concerns:

1) Had to get caught (Obviously!) and prosecuted
2) His or her scam had to be either stupid or poorly conceptualized
3) The person had to have not only embarrassed himself but also others

After looking at two dozen candidates, I narrowed it down to three people. For those of you wondering if A.J. Green (or whatever his real name is) of Absolute Poker Scandal fame was considered for Casino/Gambling Cheating Turkey of the Year, he was not, simply because he made tons of money and never REALLY got caught, meaning formally charged with any crime.

The Bronze Gambling Cheating Turkey award goes to RICHARD MARCUS. Yes, that's right, ME! Why? No, I didn't cheat any real or online casino or perpetrate any scam, but I did make one horrible blunder that qualified me for the awards: I cheated in a game of a Strip Poker because I really wanted to get this hot babe, and I got caught! Not only did I end up not getting the babe but I embarrassed myself and others because a great ex-cheater like me is not supposed to get caught by a bunch of amateur drunks and strippers!!!

The Silver Gambling Cheating Turkey award goes to STEVE FORTE. Steve has been charged with 3 felonies related to the Borgata Poker scam last June. This is the scam where Forte and his accomplices allegedly set up high-stakes poker players in a private suite at the Borgata Hotel while the Borgata Open tournament was going on in its poker room. Hidden cameras and computer programs were used to peek at the victims' hole cards and then analyze the hands in order to come up with the playing strategy to optimize the pilfered information. But someone recognized that Forte was a celebrated ex-cheat turned casino consultant and then the cops came busting down the door of the fancy suite. Forte certainly qualified for the Golden Cheating Turkey award as he certainly embarrassed himself as well as other casino consultants in the industry, including me!

The Golden Gambling Cheating Turkey award goes to Jacob Nickels. Shit, he embarrassed an entire American City! His father Greg Nickels is the mayor of Seattle, and Jacob got caught up and busted in perhaps the most pervasive casino scam in the history of the world! I'm talking about the Tran Organization's major international baccarat scam that got busted after a multi-year FBI investigation found that nearly two-dozen casinos in the US and Canada were hit. Nickels, the son, turned out to be a corrupt pit boss who helped Tran's underlings recruit crooked dealers to perform false shuffles that enabled his casino to be bilked by crooked baccarat players. Nickels copped out, pleaded guilty, and whether or not he goes to prison, he certainly wins the award for being the CASINO CHEATING TURKEY OF THE YEAR!

Don't forget that beginning December I will begin my "Casino Scam of the Month," and at the end of the year rank the top 10 casino scams of 2007, and that will not be easy!