The most successful scams are often obscenely simple, and many of them are completely devoid of originality and fiction. You just wonder how such banalities could be crowned with success in large casinos with numerous guards, powerful video surveillance and experienced managers.
Something similar happened in several offline casinos located in different cities of Ohio and, most likely, in several other American states. Accurately assess the scale of the incident is extremely difficult due to the circumstances of the case.
The bottom line is that a group of fraudsters robbed gambling places on the roulette table. Interestingly, the crooks did not reinvent the wheel, but simply distracted the attention of dealers, pit bosses and managers to steal chips from the table unnoticed. The roles of the gang members were carefully thought out, and the actions were coordinated as much as possible, which allowed them to successfully crank their machinations for a long time. As a result, justice overtook them, but it seems that most of the cheats were able to escape punishment. But let’s take it in order …
According to Karen Huey of the Ohio Casino Control Commission, this is a large group of several dozen people (supposedly from fifty to seventy). Most of them are Dominicans or people from the Dominican Republic living in New York.
The cheaters worked according to an incredibly primitive, but very effective scheme, which was used long time ago by fraudsters around the world. A group of crooks began to play roulette at low rates. As a rule, it was about one-dollar chips. They chose the most lively tables to have the opportunity to merge with the crowd and not attract attention. Choosing the right moments, some members of the gang distracted the casino employees using various methods. At this time, others deftly pocketed the chips off the table. Here I recall the opinion of old Einstein about the only way to win a casino: “… stealing chips on the roulette wheel while the dealer is not looking.”
After some time, the fraudsters with stolen chips went to the toilet or customer rest areas, where they could hide from observation, and handed the chips over to their accomplices. However, they were in no hurry to immediately cash them at the box office. At first they exchanged them at the tables for chips of a larger denomination in order to entangle traces, and only then they redeemed the money. The scammers were not greedy, they always adhered to their intended plan, clearly fulfilled their roles and, apparently, changed casinos frequently. Thanks to a well-designed scheme and high performing skills, they did not come across for a long time.
But how much rope or curled, and the end will be. Vigilant employees drew attention to the strange visitors and attracted to the investigation competent employees of the bodies that control the activities in the field of gambling. On June 1, 2012, two women and two men were detained at Hollywood Casino, which had opened in Toledo three days before. Only one member of the group that was sentenced to a fine appeared in court. Already at the end of the same month, Luis Abad-Pena and Jeckson Tapia again fell in the Cleveland Horseshoe Casino, but they did not return to court. Some time later, Louis was detained. He was sentenced to a fine of two and a half thousand dollars and one year in prison, which is the maximum penalty for this crime. But the rest of the gang did not lie on the bottom. At first Hollywood Casino Columbus noticed three of them, but the scammers fled before the agents arrived. And then, in the summer of 2013, four active participants were detained, who appeared before the court and received various punishments, including fines and prison sentences. The criminals refused to cooperate with the authorities, which made the investigation more difficult. It was possible to talk only one of them. He said that usually the cheaters were limited to one or two thousand dollars at a time, although with a particularly favorable set of circumstances they managed to pick a much larger sum.
Since only a few people were arrested, it should be expected that the activity of the group will resume. It is not excluded that the most skillful swindlers did not even stop doing their work, continuing to clear the casino at the roulette table. From our side, we want to add that such cases are convincing evidence that playing in online casinos is often much safer. By choosing a reliable online portal with gambling, you will never come across scammers who can steal your chips or cheat in any other way