Thursday, March 21, 2013

High Rolling Cheat Supposedly Cheats Aussie Casino Out of $32 Million!...I Am Not Buying It

A high rolling fraudster in Melbourne went high tech for his latest scam, cheating a casino out of more than $40 million. According to the Herald Sun, the man checked in to the Crown Casino as a foreigner and stayed with his family in a VIP 'villa' at the luxury Crown Towers hotel, attached to the casino. He then infiltrated the venue's security system, allowing the cheat's accomplices to monitor the gaming floor surveillance cameras, and passing on signals as to which way he should bet.

 It is believed more than A$32 million ($40.3 million) were stolen before the man and his family were kicked out in the middle of the night by casino management. A staff member, who was assigned to look after the 'high roller' during his stay, has apparently been sacked in connection with the incident. Crown Casino has said it is in a good position to recover much of the stolen funds, working with Victorian police and gambling authorities. The scam is said to be the biggest in the casino's 19-year history.

How the scam worked:

The fraudster checks in as a 'foreign high-roller' at Crown Towers, a luxury hotel attached to the casino. Access is gained to the casino's security system, possibly through an unauthorised staff member. The fraudster's accomplices watch the high-resolution security feeds from the VIP gaming floor, able to see the tables where the man is playing. The information that the accomplice sees is relayed to the fraudster somehow, giving him indications on which way to bet.

Finally, the fraudster is hit with a 'withdrawal of licence' in the middle of the night - a legal document disallowing him on casino property; essentially a trespass from the venue.

My take: This seems to me awfully dubious. I mean, just because someone infiltrates a casino's security system doesn't mean he can cheat or sway the odds in his favor. If you are watching what the casino is watching, how does their money get into your pockets? You still have to cheat, and watching what the casinos watches has nothing to do with prearranging cards or rigging roulette wheels. So unless something more comes to light here, I will remain skeptical about this "huge" scam.