Casino Surveillance News: March 2012

Jim Goding image

Casino Surveillance News

March 2012

Welcome back to Casino Surveillance News, the longest-running trade letter for our little niche in the casino world. The news this month is a little thin on the ground, partly because it has only been three weeks since the last issue. I'm still trying to catch up. The news-only portion of this newsletter can be seen at http://casinosurveillancenews.com/newsletter-2

CSN News:

Once again, the Keynote article is not specifically related to Surveillance. It is, however related to casinos and their impact on the lives of the people who benefit from them. If you are of American Indian heritage, or work for an Indian casino, you might want to read it. The events about which this is written will have an impact on your life.

It's News Time:

(Email me if any of the links don't work for you and I will send the text.)

BUSTS AND SCAMS:

Two Oregon men face felony charges after allegedly trying to pass fake $100 bills at Spirit Mountain Casino, which led authorities to more counterfeit bills and money-manufacturing equipment. See the story A local Toronto man is behind bars after police say he tried to make off with $70,000 in gaming chips from Niagara Fallsview Casino in Ontario, Canada. See the story Two employees at the Resorts World casino in New York were caught making fake comp cards and selling them to gamblers. See the story Cyprus authorities say they will drop charges against dozens of elderly women for gambling after reports of their prosecution triggered disbelief among the public. Some 42 women aged between 60 and 98 had received a summons to appear in court after police nabbed them playing a local version of gin rummy at a private residence in 2009. See the story Sheriff's deputies and private security patrolled the California Chukchansi government center to make sure both sides of a leadership dispute that led to a violent skirmish a day earlier complied with a stay-away order so tempers could cool. See the story [See also Editorial below] The sports gambling site Bodog was shut down and four Canadians indicted, including founder Calvin Ayre, for illegal gambling that generated more than $100 million in winnings, federal prosecutors announced.  See the story at these two links: Link 1 , Link 2

ONLINE POKER NEWS:

A Canadian man has pleaded guilty to conspiracy charges in connection with a government crackdown on Internet poker gambling that shut down the three largest online poker companies in the U.S. See the story

OTHER CASINO NEWS:

No state helped the gambling industry come out of a two-year recessionary slump more than Pennsylvania, which has seen more than a $1 billion increase in revenue during the past two fiscal years. Yet, like most states which have recently legalized casino gaming, it has not come close yet to meeting expected revenues for the state. See the story Las Vegas casino mogul Steve Wynn might soon be banned from the Philippines. A  House of Representatives committee in Manila voted to ban the colorful CEO of Wynn Resorts Ltd. from ever doing business there. Philippine gaming regulators will now take up the measure. See the story

Keynote Article:

This is an EDITORIAL OPINION piece. Feel free to skip it. If you are of Indian blood or work for an Indian casino, you may want to read it.

I Cry For My People

I cry for my people. Recent events in California, on the approaches to one of the most beautiful places on Earth, bring tears to my eyes and prayers to my lips. I smoke, and send my prayers to Grandfather, whatever his name amongst the many languages of my people. My people, of whatever region or tribe,  have survived smallpox, measles, venereal diseases, drug addiction, alcoholism, and many other ills brought to this continent by Europeans and others. My people have survived massacres, forced and sometimes violent relocations, wars, service in the military of their adopted country, neglect, and even have survived the evils associated with welfare and government edict, government payoffs for tribal identity and tribal lands, and many other US Government interferences with their identity, usually to the benefit of corporate or private greed. My People have had their lands and languages and religion taken away, been forced to adopt the religions of their oppressors, and have still survived to maintain their identity and their souls. In the second decade of the twenty-first century, our leaders are falling victim to the final blow. I choose the example above because I have worked with some of the People on this reservation, and so has my closest non-family brother. They are falling victim, as have many others over the last three centuries, and the last three decades, to something I call White Man's Disease. They are not alone. Many tribes have thus fallen victim, in various ways. The final blow is to become what they have survived for so long. They are becoming the same as those they have resisted: their life motivation is White Man's Disease. It is obvious that many have not yet fallen victim. On several reservations where I have taught my skills, the tribe has used the proceeds and profits from casino operations to benefit the tribe in many ways. Most especially to make it more independent of the US Government: they have built schools, hired teachers of ability, built clinics and hospitals and brought doctors in to provide medical care for the people. They have supported their grandfathers and grandmothers, widows and orphans, created programs to pull the People away from the other diseases of drug and alcohol addiction, and generally benefitted the Tribe in general through building programs to bring the supporting services denied to them by former administrations, including such programs as sewer, electrical power, roads and transportation programs for seniors and the disabled. They have diversified their finances, creating other businesses both in support of casino operations and completely in addition to them, creating hundreds and thousands of jobs on and off reservation. They have benefitted their local communities as well as the People themselves. They have put the People to work, trained them, and in many, many cases completely turned around the descending spiral that our people have been in for three hundred years. In the early years of this century, though, I have been watching as tribal leaders succumbed to White Man's Disease. It is not a new phenomenon. I saw it back it the sixties and seventies, when tribal "leaders" controlled the flow of government program money to their friends and relatives, and denied aid to those who opposed their prominence in tribal government. ONE such instance resulted in the Wounded Knee incident of 1973, and there were several others within that decade. I watched entire tribes sell off their reservations for money, so that they could buy the trappings of the white man's world: cars, fancy gewgaws, drugs and alcohol. Oklahoma tribes were nearly destroyed completely by the discovery of oil beneath their lands, which had been "granted" to them in the previous century only because the government thought those lands were worthless. Many, many times since the seventies, I have seen similar things happening in Indian country. Since Indian gaming was legalized in 1988, we have seen many more. Because, for the first time in many instances, there was a real revenue stream available to a reservation People, a few decided to cash in on it. When they did, they began campaigns to exclude anyone else they possibly could. White Man's Disease: Among the people of my parents'  heritage, it is known as GREED. It is one of the first of the seven deadly sins of the Catholic Church and many other Christian faiths. It generates other sins, and it is believed to destroy the innocence of the soul. We have seen, over the last few years, many instances of greed. Tribes have moved to exclude entire families who have been considered a part of the tribe for entire generations. US Government edicts have been issued; tribal payments both from US Government and tribal enterprises have been cut off from tribal people on the basis of documents reaching back into the previous two centuries. Documents which were questionable at best, and crooked at worst. What is the real basis? To reduce the number of people receiving benefits of tribal operations when they are finally starting to get on their feet. One should look at the real basis of inclusion and exclusion. Were these people a part of the tribal life? Does blood count for so much? How many of our tribes have adopted people by marriage, or taken in orphaned children, or saved colonies and fed them when they were starving? Many of these people became part of the tribes. Yet, did they fit current government standards because of a "blood percentage" of 1/64th or 1/32nd? Their children fit, true. It looks, from my perspective, as if some of our tribal leaders are adopting the standards of the government and using them for personal advantage. They want to control the money flow, they want to control who gets the higher-paying jobs and other benefits from our first money making operations in 300 years. White Man's Disease. Greed. Greed for money and greed for power. Neither is a desired part of our heritage. Neither is something we want to preserve. Let us just package up this greed and send it back where it came from, to the politicians in Washington, to the state politicians who wish they were in Washington, and drop it by the wayside. Give it to the crooked politicians, who already have it in abundance. We don't need it. Let us take the income from the casino operations, diversify, use the money to benefit the People: all of them, including the adoptees, the children and the seniors and the others for whom we are responsible. How many jobs does a hospital or a school create, both directly and indirectly? How many jobs does a solar-power manufacturer create? A farm? Construction company? How much more money and security can this type of diversification bring to our People, many of whom would never consider working in a casino, or directly taking the money of their neighbors for no return? I cry for my people, who are falling to the final blow, and becoming their own conquerors. I cry for my people. Jim Goding * * *

Currently Available Programs:

CSN's complete, on-site, one-payment permanent training program, customized for YOUR casino operation, can still be set up for you. We can accommodate privately owned, corporate, or tribally owned casinos outside of Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Please see what is available at this page: http://casinosurveillancenews.com/surveillance-training-programs

WE STILL SET THE STANDARDS FOR TRAINING OF CASINO SURVEILLANCE

and for

BASIC SECURITY TRAINING FOR CASINOS:

I have taken down two related websites from the net.

ALL OF OUR INFORMATION AND TRAINING IS STILL AVAILABLE either on the base CSN website or directly  from me.

Contact jimgoding@casinosurveillancenews.com

That's all for this month, Folks.

Sponsors for this newsletter: Casino Surveillance Operations Manual, 2012 Edition: inquire with booksales@casinosurveillancenews.com, or visit the Bookstore If you cannot access the Internet site casinosurveillancenews.com from the computer where you receive the newsletter, please re-subscribe from your home address or other email address. Many of my subscribers may have restrictions on their internet access at work. You can now subscribe to the newsletters from any page of the website at www.casinosurveillancenews.com Mailing List Policy: Our mailing list will never be sold to ANYONE, and we will never send spam. No special mailings will go out for advertising purposes, unless I judge that it will be of real use and real benefit to you, the readers. The only use for this list will be the newsletter and any major flash that looks important enough that you will all want to know. Copyright © 2012 by Jim Goding. All rights reserved. Unauthorized sales or duplication by any means is a violation of law and of the proprietary rights of the author. Purchase this author’s work at www.casinosurveillancenews.com.

Casino Surveillance News: February 2012

Jim Goding imageCasino Surveillance Newsletter

February 2012

Welcome back to Casino Surveillance News, the longest-running trade letter for our little niche in the casino world. This issue is late, again for personal reasons. My wife and I just lost a loved one, a young man, to cancer and medical irresponsibility, and this has taken two weeks out of our lives. But life goes on, so here I am at somewhat reduced capacity, keeping this going for you, my readers, and getting myself back into life as normal. The news-only portion of this newsletter can be seen at http://casinosurveillancenews.com/newsletter-2

CSN News:

The Keynote article this month has little to do with Casino Surveillance: It has much more to do with personnel hiring, training and retention practices in the casino industry, sparked off by an "innovation" recently announced by the Revel Casino, opening in Atlantic City (see "Busts and Scams" below). This article will never become a part of my casino surveillance materials, as it is far outside the boundaries of what is considered a part of our duties, though there are some aspects that concern us in Surveillance. There are also links to articles by a colleague, Professor I. Nelson Rose, who has been intimately associated with the recent changes in regards to Internet Poker, and who presents some legal views, including his testimony in Congress, that we should all consider as a part of the "Big Picture" of our jobs.

It's News Time:

(Email me if any of the links don't work for you and I will send the text.)

Busts and Scams:

A Las Vegas priest has been sentenced to three years in prison for theft of more than $650,000 from his parish, to feed his gambling habit. See the stories at link 1 and link 2 Two Louisiana women were arrested in early January for fraudulent and counterfeit tickets video poker tickets cashed at local businesses. See the story Here's a good, white-collar scam for you: the Kentucky legislature is mandating ethics training for all its members, and paying a famous convicted felon $5000 an hour for his insights. Jack Abramoff was convicted of a number of counts of fraud, conspiracy and lobbying scams. He still owes hundreds of thousands of dollars in restitution to Indian tribes. See the story Apparently the record gaming revenues in Macau come from sources the casinos would rather not have people looking at too closely: illegal money transfers from mainland China. It is starting to look as if Macau's ascendancy in the worldwide gaming market may be built on a foundation of sand. See the story A Massachusetts state trooper has been arrested and charged with running an illegal bookmaking operation as well as extortion and other crimes. See the story New Jersey casino regulators fined the Tropicana Casino and Resort $27,500 for allowing a 14-year-old to gamble last summer, as well as violating the rules of a card game. See the story Parx Casino agreed to pay a $30,000 fine for an underage gambling violation, the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board announced in mid-January. See the story The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board fined Mount Airy Casino Resort $20,000 for purchasing goods from a supplier owned by Louis DeNaples while his gaming license was suspended. See the story An unidentified man stole about $360 in credits from a Mount Airy guest in late January. See the story Mount Airy Casino Resort was fined $160,000 for allowing seven underage guests on the gaming floor in February 2011. Many other Pennsylvania casinos were also hit during the same session of the Board. See the story A Saskatchewan dealer convicted of multiple counts of cheating faces prison time unless he repays the tribe that hired and trained him for losses from his cheating. See the story Revel Casino, soon to open in Atlantic City, has announced a new "innovation" in its hiring practices. New hires for the casino will face having to re-apply for the jobs they hold every four to six years. See the story Five women and one man were arrested during a prostitution raid at the Sands casino in Bethlehem, PA. See the story An unemployed man has confessed to strangling his wife to death after she discovered he had rung up $20k of gambling debts. See the story A 61 year-old woman is has been busted for embezzlement  after losing $1.5 million of her boss’s money playing slots at a convenience store in Texas. See the story

Online Poker News:

The D.C. Council voted to repeal the city’s controversial Internet gambling law. See the story at http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/dc-wire/post/dc-council-rejects-internet-gambling/2012/02/07/gIQAX0O0wQ_blog.html

Keynote Article:

This is an EDITORIAL OPINION piece. Feel free to skip it, and go on to the links to Professor Rose, below.

Casino Hiring Practices

A Professional Opinion from a Non-lawyer

by Jim Goding, February 12, 2012 At the time of this writing, I am looking at news stories (probably omitting significant details) regarding the hiring practices at the soon-to-be-opening Revel Casino in Atlantic City, NJ. [You can find two of these stories in the Busts and Scams section above.] I am, to say the least, shocked and disgusted at the information that is actually available. It is true that I cannot have the whole story (considering what may or may not have been revealed to the press, or withheld from the stories, which is my only source in this matter).  Regardless of any information I do not have, the practices at this casino, especially in light of the current job market in the United States and in New Jersey in particular, are disgusting, exploitative, and unfair according to current law in the United States, and certainly disgusting according to American customs and what is expected of an employer. What is worse, they could be setting up the casino for a set of losses over the long term that potentially far outweigh the relatively short-term benefits they could receive from these hiring and personnel-retention policies, no matter how well they were vetted by the legal staff of the corporation. Hiring policies like these are what the unions look for when they start recruiting employees. That alone is one of the reasons for a company to look VERY, VERY HARD at any such practices. Having your employees go on strike for two weeks, with the loss of revenue concerned, is far more than enough to offset any benefits gained by the hiring and personnel retention policies this casino has announced. Here is a summary of the practices this casino has announced:

1. Front-line employees such as dealers, cocktail servers, bartenders and slots personnel, agree upon application, that if hired they must re-apply for their jobs and contend with new applicants for the position ever four to six years.

2. After holding  their four-to-six year position, in which they have not been fired for cause, they must re-enter the job market by applying for the position they already hold and contend for the position with newer, younger potential employees, in the face of a stated company policy that the practice is to "keep its service fresh."

This means that a person who works at this casino has no job security, no matter how good they are at their job. Hiring and firing practices are arbitrary, as all of us know, and especially so in the casino industry, where 'cronyism" abounds, and often a person gets hired because of who he is related to and who he knows, or his or her ability to "suck up to" the potential boss. Believe me, I have seen far more of this in the last 20+ years than I ever expected when I got into the business as a dealer in 1990. And I have seen more evidence of this, from my various positions in Surveillance, than I would care to talk about. It takes two years to make a competent craps or wheel dealer, after they get out of school. It is a year before a new cashier can be trusted not to make dumb errors. It takes months for a slots floorperson to be competent enough to be confident in their job. Think about this, just from the point of training new employees, increased level of mistakes, and the number of thieves that come out of school thinking they can get away with it. Believe me, it ain't just the old-timers that steal. Most of the staff thieves and cheaters have worked for the company less than two years, and many of them have not even yet reached a level of competence at their jobs. When you are going to have to start over every four to six years, it is highly unlikely you will ever be able to buy a house at a reasonable rate of interest. You credit rating will suck, because this information is available to the credit reporting agencies. They have no way of knowing how likely you are to get re-hired: all they know is you will be applying for a job four years from your date of hire, back in the job market again and potentially unemployed every four years. What does that look like to a bank or loan company when looking at a candidate for a 30-year mortgage or five-year car purchase? So right from the start, the Revel casino is looking at making the majority of its front-line employees people who have no interest in keeping their jobs in the long term, or in being star employees. Since the employer is going to have the opportunity to fire them with no risk in four years, why bother training and correcting? Revel casino is looking at making ALL of its front-line employees people who are out to get as much as they possibly can in the short term. This is the Justification corner of the Internal Theft Triangle. Revel Casino is also looking at people who have no interest in long-term investment in the company, such as buying its stock as a part of any benefits programs. "I'll be looking for a job in four years, why should I bother investing in my company?" This reveals another aspect of the situation:  After four years of employment, with annual raises for satisfactory performance of around 2 to 3 percent, an employee at the dealer level (minimum wage plus tips) is making a significant amount over his original starting wage. This alone is obviously one of the justifications for these personnel retention policies. A few thousand a year in reduced wages from hiring a new employee---especially since the old one is probably not eligible for unemployment benefits due to his agreement with the casino when applying---is enough to offset the costs of replacing that person, even if the company has to fund his entire licensing costs in New Jersey. [Cha-ching!!] What is the reason given for these policies? "To keep its service fresh." This alone tells you that a front-line employee, no matter how good he is at his job, is going to get let go after one or two rounds. The company will be continually retraining, continually weeding out the employees, none of whom, below the management level, have any stake whatever in establishing themselves in the company. How many star employees do you get out of a company that tells you even before they hire you that you are not going to be working there long enough to make performance a priority? Here is another question, not answered in the press: if a person has to be re-hired by the casino, does he start over at his original wage, or does he retain his wages and increases and other benefits? If he does not retain any benefits of working for the company, then there is no reason for him to re-apply. Having acquired four years of experience as a dealer, he now has a little bit of edge in the rest of the market. However, Revel casino, at the four-year point, will only be receiving applications from inexperienced people, just out of school. No one else will want to work for this company, and there is no benefit in staying there. That means that Revel will have a very limited group of applicants. Most of them will be young and inexperienced, willing to do anything to get a job, no matter the lack of long-term employment prospects. Many of the rest will be people who have not been able to keep a job in other companies, for whatever reasons. No one will want to work for this company who has a career in mind. And there will be a very high expectance of cheats and thieves within their pool of applicants. After all, company loyalty and integrity is not an issue if you have to start over in four years, is it? And if you got fired for poor performance, internal theft, petty theft,  lack of compliance with company regulations, none of these are going to show up in your records from the other company unless you actually were arrested. The last point I wish to make, despite many aspects of the situation not yet mentioned, is that Revel is, right up front, stating as a policy that it is not interested in keeping older employees. This is discrimination because of age, and is illegal in this country. I am sure their lawyers have figured out a way around it, but apparently Revel, in looking to "keep its service fresh," is quite willing to let anyone go simply because they are not "fresh." The benefits of getting rid of long-term employees, working at higher rates, has already been seen over the last few years in this, and many other industries in this country, in the current economy. Revel is stating it as a policy, couched in pretty language, right up front. I am INVITING comments on this article, and will publish valid comments that are not simply advertising someone else's website. You are invited to this discussion.

* * *

Professor I Nelson Rose articles on current activities in Congress and the courts: http://www.gamblingandthelaw.com/ http://www.gamblingandthelaw.com/columns/317-sweden-gets-it-mostly-right.html http://www.gamblingandthelaw.com/columns/318-amnesty-for-internet-poker-sites.html In addition, Professor Rose testified in Congress on February 9, and I believe he will soon be publishing his testimony.

Currently Available Programs:

CSN's complete, on-site, one-payment permanent training program, customized for YOUR casino operation, can still be set up for you. We can accommodate privately owned, corporate, or tribally owned casinos outside of Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Please see what is available at this page: http://casinosurveillancenews.com/surveillance-training-programs

WE STILL SET THE STANDARDS FOR TRAINING OF CASINO SURVEILLANCE

That's all for this month, Folks. Sponsors for this newsletter: Casino Surveillance Operations Manual, 2012 Edition: inquire with booksales@casinosurveillancenews.com If you cannot access the Internet site casinosurveillancenews.com from the computer where you receive the newsletter, please re-subscribe from your home address or other email address. Many of my subscribers may have restrictions on their internet access at work. You can now subscribe to the newsletters from any page of the website at www.casinosurveillancenews.com Mailing List Policy: Our mailing list will never be sold to ANYONE, and we will never send spam. No special mailings will go out for advertising purposes, unless I judge that it will be of real use and real benefit to you, the readers. The only use for this list will be the newsletter and any major flash that looks important enough that you will all want to know. Copyright © 2012 by Jim Goding. All rights reserved. Unauthorized sales or duplication by any means is a violation of law and of the proprietary rights of the author. Purchase this author’s work at www.casinosurveillancenews.com.

Updates to CSN

Jim Goding imageUpdates are in progress, and will continue over the next several weeks.  Please bear with me as I get the website updated. There will be times when some of the links don’t work, or will be missing from the published pages. If you have a problem reaching any part of the site, please email me at jimgoding@casinosurveillancenews.com and I will get you the materials you are trying to see. I am aligning the Training Materials sections with excerpts from all of the new articles published since the 2005 edition of the book, including lessons and other materials. Watch the right-hand column for changes. I will not be including the full text of articles. Some of these will still be available, through the Archives pages of the newsletter. However, these too will go away once the rest of the updates are done.

Happy New Year 2012

Jim Goding image

Casino Surveillance News

January 2012

CSN wishes you all a Happy New Year season  and a prosperous and productive 2012. Welcome back to Casino Surveillance News, the longest-running trade letter for our little niche in the casino world (even if I do miss an issue for business or personal reasons). This entire newsletter can be viewed at http://casinosurveillancenews.com/ The news-only portion can be seen at http://casinosurveillancenews.com/newsletter-2

CSN News:

The Keynote article follows the news in the new layout for the newsletter. This month's article was inspired by a question from an Asian correspondent, even though the article itself does not address the question he asked.

Casino Surveillance Operations Manual 2011 Edition is now available on CD. Check it out Here

It's News Time:

(Email me if any of the links don't work for you and I will send the text.) BUSTS AND SCAMS: On December 9, Louisiana state troopers assigned to the Gaming Enforcement Section arrested two people for their roles in internal theft during drawings held at L'Auberge du Lac Casino in Lake Charles.  See the story A Munster, Illinois, man was charged with felony theft in a scheme to defraud Ameristar Casino in East Chicago where he was a pit manager. See the story Two men face embezzlement and fraud charges in a case where one person, and a casino host, allegedly conspired to use funds embezzled from the employer for gambling at MGM Grand Detroit. See the story A pair of Houston co-workers settled a lawsuit over the rights to a $12.7 million Megabucks jackpot won at the Aria nearly a year ago. See the story When the Revel megacasino opens in May in Atlantic City, applicants are being told, they will have jobs only for as few as four years at a time, after which they will have to re-apply. See the story [Ed. Note: this is only one of the ways in which casino and other employers are avoiding the costs of keeping employees for the long term. Marketed as a method of keeping its employees young and fresh, it is a means of getting rid of unsatisfactory employees with little liability, reducing annual wage increases customarily a part of the long-term employment process, and reducing payrolls in general. It is a bean-counter's solution to rising payroll costs and the need to really train and discipline employees. It has been many years since a person in the casino industry (or many others) could count on long-term employment, and this is another nail in the coffin of long term employment with benefits. I believe this casino, and many others with similar practices, will soon be running afoul of the Fed for unfair employment practices. This type of "solution" also encourages unionization, which I have personally never favored, but I can see the advantages in it for casino employees.] One of the 11 individuals indicted on April 15 during the federal government's crackdown on Internet poker pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court to charges of bank fraud, wire fraud and engaging in unlawful Internet gambling. See the story This one is really not casino news, but I could not resist throwing it in, having had something very similar happen to me a couple years back. A FEDEX delivery was made by throwing a large and fragile object over the fence, without even bothering to ring the doorbell first. [In my case, a box of computer components was thrown over the fence into my backyard, where they were shredded by my dogs.] See the story See the video [when you watch this one, there are several links to similar "deliveries"  available.] Another lawsuit was filed in Austria by a Swiss national who feels he was defrauded by the casino when he hit a jackpot showing 57 million euros. He feels the casino should honor the win, and that he was insulted by the offer of a free meal and 100 bucks. See the story [Not having the facts in the case, I don't know who is the scammer here.] A New York man was arrested on an outstanding warrant in connection with an alleged team card marking scheme last year at Dover Downs and Delaware Park casinos. See the story

ONLINE POKER NEWS:

Nevada Gaming Commission made online gaming history when the board unanimously approved the nation’s first regulations for online poker. See the story A Department of Justice legal opinion released in late December declares that Internet gaming transactions are legal between states where gambling is legal. See the story Professor  I. Nelson Rose has published an article examining this decision and putting it in legal perspective for all online gaming. See the story A summary of popular issues in regard to online Poker and other online gaming: see the story

OTHER CASINO NEWS:

A Colorado man who found $10,000 before boarding a flight in Las Vegas says he returned the money to the owner because he wanted to show his children it was "the right thing to do." See the story

Keynote Article:

Protecting Casino Guests

Part II

By Jim Goding

Each casino, as well as every hotel and restaurant and any other commercial enterprise, has the responsibility of maintaining a safe environment for its guests. This is especially true in the case of casinos, amusement parks, hotels and other recreational facilities. First off, it is recognized as a good business practice. If your players and other guests feel secure and safe, they are more likely to let their hair down, relax, have a good time, and spend more money. If they feel safe in the environment, they will return. Second, and in fact even more importantly, most jurisdictions require that an "innkeeper" provide a safe environment to the degree that would be considered reasonable and prudent. The key question is, what would a reasonable and prudent person do to prevent situations where a guest could become the victim of a scam? If the host invites people to his establishment he is to some degree responsible for the security of his guests and their property while they are there. The back side of this, of course, is that if a host (casino, hotel, restaurant, bar, etc.) takes no measures to safeguard the security of his guests, he is responsible if they are injured or robbed, to the degree that prudent and reasonable measures have been neglected. If the host is negligent in normal security, allowing thieves to run rampant, making no attempts to handle situations where guests have been victimized, laying the responsibility for robberies and thefts on the guests themselves, he is liable to some degree for the situations that inevitably will occur. Desirable guests will not return, the thieves and scammers keep on coming, and sooner or later the environment degrades to the point where the only clientele are people there to see what they can steal or how they can cheat. And in a case like that, often the only employees who will remain are those with the same attitude. This may sound extreme, but I have worked in two casinos, for a brief time, where this had been allowed to happen. This is a matter of casino policy and compliance with local laws. In some areas, the "loser" is the victim, especially in cases where his or her own carelessness left an opening for a thief or scammer. In other areas, even picking up abandoned credits off a slot machine or found money on the floor is grounds for arrest. In one jurisdiction, the finder of lost or abandoned property must make a reasonable effort to return it to the owner, without soliciting reward, and keeping found property without making that effort is a crime. What is required is a policy, made in alignment with local law, that allows Security, Surveillance and operational areas to take action―or refrain from doing so―according to the circumstances involved. It may be necessary for such policy to be approved by local Gaming Control authorities. In any case, such policy should be approved by the company legal counsel. Let's look at a couple of examples. Probably the most common theft occurring in casinos is a player carelessly leaving credits on a machine, or cashing out a slot machine and leaving the voucher in place. The player goes off to the bathroom or to the food court, along comes the thief (under whatever name―credit puncher, slots thief, silver miner, or less printable and far more politically incorrect names), who cashes out the credits, visits the closest kiosk and turns the voucher into cash, and departs the area or the casino. A common variation on this is for a player to leave property behind―purses, wallets, clothing, etc. The thief doesn't usually care. He (or she) will take the purse or wallet, retrieve the cash, and drop the wallet in the closest bathroom or trash can, or in extreme cases take the credit cards too. Unfortunately, players often seem to trust others in the casino; they rely on local customs, such as leaning a chair against the table or machine, to guard their money or property. Often they will even ask complete unknowns to "watch their machine" for them while they go to the bathroom or visit with a friend at another machine. Or they rely upon the dealer to keep the other players from filching chips from the bankroll they left behind on the table. All of these things leave your players open to theft. So, the player leaves his chips on the table, the dealer goes on break, and the new dealer doesn't know who they belong to. Or the slot player who has been asked to "watch this machine" runs out of credits or wants to move to another machine, and leaves it―or cashes it out himself and moves on. All of these examples fall under "abandoned property." The casino needs a policy that says how much responsibility it is prepared to take for the money left behind by the player. The next level is a player who puts a voucher in a machine and receives a partial cash-out, because the denomination of the machine will not accept the credits. We call this "residual credits." The player has been playing a nickel machine, and has a voucher for $72.85. He stops at a dollar machine, puts in his voucher, and the machine won't accept the 85 cents, so it prints out a new voucher for that amount. The machine still has 72 one-dollar credits on it. The player, being a player, thinks the machine has cashed him out, doesn't look at the amount, and takes his 85-cent voucher to a kiosk, leaving $72 on the machine. The player registers a protest with the closest Security or Slots person, thinking he got robbed by the kiosk. Meanwhile the credit puncher has "happened by" (probably hanging out in the area looking for the opportunity), cashed out the $72 and left the casino. As a personal opinion, I think the slots manufacturers share the blame in this one, but in fact the casino has a modicum of responsibility, even though the player has some too: The machine cashed out, but the player never looked at the amount, so left his credits behind. This happens often with inexperienced players. Perhaps the slots manufacturers could come up with a different solution; it would save immense numbers of man-hours on the part of Security, Slots personnel, and Surveillance, in tracing thieves, making reports, and also save local police a lot of trouble. Maybe cash out the credits at the end of play, instead of when the odd-amount voucher is first inserted. What should casino policy be in this case? Of course we are going to attempt to find the thief, but if the person has already left the casino, what is the casino's responsibility? A definite policy is needed here. Does the casino replace the player's credits? And what is the safeguard for preventing this as a scam? Perhaps the thief was the brother-in-law of the player, to begin with. Then there is the deliberate distract-and-grab thief. These operate in teams and by themselves, and any casino, hotel, airport or shopping mall is subject to their activity. They are looking for a busy environment where people are already distracted and where local security and other personnel have little attention to spare. Casinos and amusement parks are the ideal environment for this activity. We see them in table games too. We call them "rail thieves," as this is a traditional scam on the craps game, where players keep their money in the rail. With the noise and distraction of a hot craps game, it is easy for a player to nab a few chips and walk away. It happens at every game, though, including Poker. As above, the casino has a definite stake in, and responsibility for, safeguarding the players from such scammers. If your player can't feel safe in your casino, he will go somewhere else where he can. Certain policies I can definitely recommend. They start with identifying whether a person took a "target of opportunity," or whether he or she was in the casino looking for or creating the opportunity. Obviously, if a person has been busted more than once for theft in the casino, they need a permanent 86, making them subject to arrest if they return to the casino. Some jurisdictions don't allow this, and others support it completely. In general, a person ejected for cause from a casino can be barred from the premises (private property) in the future. And this is another area where policy must be set by upper management so that it is not up to the supervisor on duty to make the decisions. For what reasons can a person be barred from the premises? Where do you draw the line between a 24-hour ejection for a one-time target-of-opportunity theft and a repeat offender, such as the credit puncher who has repeatedly been thrown out? What do local laws state, and how tough does the casino want to be in safeguarding its legitimate patrons? Do your local laws and casino policy allow Security to eject a person for suspicious behavior alone (such as cruising the slots areas, not playing, apparently looking for credits left behind on machines)? Does it require an actual theft before Security can bar the person? Do repeat offenders actually get permanently 86ed, or are they allowed to return again and again, looking for careless guests and money or property left behind? These questions need to be answered in policy, because one day they may be asked in a court of law. Casino policy must also be set regarding handling the victims. Do you replace what was stolen? If the player abandoned his credits and walked away, at what point does the casino take responsibility? If we can catch the thief, and convince him to return the money, obviously it will go back to the owner. But if the thief cannot be apprehended (already left the casino, never IDed by use of a player card, and not already known to Security, Slots, Table Games or Surveillance), do we replace what was stolen? This is a crucial question, because policy on this will make the casino responsible in the future to whatever degree its decision-makers choose, whether those decision makers are top management or the Security or operations supervisor on the floor, forced to make individual decisions in every case.

Safeguarding the Casino

Setting precedents and setting policy are often the same, whether we like it or not, when it comes down to the courts. Policy should be vetted by the company legal team, to ensure it is consistent with local laws and gaming regulations. Often a company policy may change when the company itself has properties in several different jurisdictions. For example, in Nevada a person can be permanently barred from a casino for any reason at all, or even for none, at the discretion of the agent of the owners (employee or supervisor) on duty at the scene. In New Jersey, it must be shown that a person was in violation of local laws. Casinos are open to everyone, and in local law, are considered to some degree to be public property. Obviously, this has a great deal to do with policies that need to be considered by management. In some jurisdictions, for example, advantage players cannot be barred from the casino. New Jersey is a case in point. In others, it is totally up to the managers on duty as to how to deal with the casino guest or player in question. If there is no policy which can be consistently enforced, the casino is to some degree liable for inconsistent handlings of situations. It can also be very much open to scams of various types. For example, with no consistent policy, one advantage player is barred from the casino by the manager on duty, while another one, equally verified as an advantage player, is allowed to play though his betting range is restricted. Or a player is "trespassed" on his first visit and then detained and cited when he attempts to play on another day, while a different one is more or less courteously escorted to the door several times before being told he is not allowed in the casino any more. Remember, in the case of an advantage player, the casino guest has violated no laws unless he has already been told, in very certain terms, that he is no longer allowed on the property. Detaining such a person is a very questionable point, unless one is calling in local law enforcement to issue an arrest citation for trespass. One player is forced to leave and another one is detained for arrest. This leaves the casino open to "legal" scams, where the player in question can actually make more money from a lawsuit than he could ever have made if allowed to play the games with his skill advantage. Detention of suspects against their will is a set of legal questions that must be addressed by management and the legal staff, to ensure compliance with local laws and to safeguard the rights of the person detained, as well as the property rights of the casino. There are a number of questions that are involved here. First, who is doing the detention? Is it done by company Security, or, as in some jurisdictions, by local or state or reservation police? What is the reason for the detention? Is the person being "arrested" ? This is a legal question in itself, involving whether the person is cooperating or being held against their will, and whether the person ordering the detention has actual first-hand, or second-hand, knowledge of a crime or misdemeanor. Is there sufficient reason to believe, on the part of the person ordering the detention, that a crime or misdemeanor has occurred and that the detainee is the one who did it? Where is it being done, and are there safeguards in place to guard the casino from claims by the person being detained? Are they taking the person to a secure room, under recording apparatus? Are they forcibly taking this person, placing security officers, other patrons, and the detainee at risk? Are they physically restraining the person, and if so, do they have sufficient reason to do so (argumentative, intoxicated, confrontational or physically combative, danger to staff and guests, etc.)? Have they checked the person for weapons, to safeguard the officers, other patrons and the person being detained? Do the Security officers involved understand that once a person has been detained against his or her will, the detaining officers and the casino are fully responsible for the person's continued well-being while under restraint? Do they understand that physical restraints can be for the safety of the detainee as well as for the officers and others? If the person is a threat to personnel and staff―such as a confrontational or combative drunk― is the person being restrained in a manner so as to safeguard others? In such a situation, is Security getting law enforcement involved, as they probably should? These are policy questions. What is your casino policy? Is there any policy, and how well is it broken down for various situations, so that the policy can be executed and enforced consistently? This is safeguarding the casino itself, as well as its invited guests.

Copyright © 2012 by Jim Goding. All rights reserved

Currently Available Programs:

CSN's complete, on-site, one-payment permanent training program, customized for YOUR casino operation, can still be set up for you. We can accommodate privately owned, corporate, or tribally owned casinos outside of Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Please see what is available at this page: http://casinosurveillancenews.com/surveillance-training-programs

WE STILL SET THE STANDARDS FOR TRAINING OF CASINO SURVEILLANCE

and for

BASIC SECURITY TRAINING FOR CASINOS:

That's all for this month, Folks. Sponsors for this newsletter: Casino Surveillance Operations Manual and Gaming Glossary: inquire with booksales@casinosurveillancenews.com If you cannot access the Internet site casinosurveillancenews.com from the computer where you receive the newsletter, please re-subscribe from your home address or other email address. Many of my subscribers may have restrictions on their internet access at work. You can now subscribe to the newsletters from any page of the website at www.casinosurveillancenews.com Mailing List Policy: Our mailing list will never be sold to ANYONE, and we will never send spam. No special mailings will go out for advertising purposes, unless I judge that it will be of real use and real benefit to you, the readers. The only use for this list will be the newsletter and any major flash that looks important enough that you will all want to know. Copyright © 2011 by Jim Goding. All rights reserved. Unauthorized sales or duplication by any means is a violation of law and of the proprietary rights of the author. Purchase this author’s work at www.casinosurveillancenews.com.

December 2011

Jim Goding image

Casino Surveillance News

December 2011

Merry Christmas to all, and welcome back to CSN.Once again, work and personal issues have forced me to skip a couple months, but I always come back. Welcome back to Casino Surveillance News, the longest-running trade letter for our little niche in the casino world. The news-only portion of this letter can be seen at http://casinosurveillancenews.com/newsletter-2 CSN News: Sorry for the missed month (again). I spent most of September and October with completing a training program, the rest of October and November moving and getting settled in a new (to us) home. Again. The updated textbook, Casino Surveillance Operations Manual, can now be ordered  through this email address:  booksales@casinosurveillancenews.com, in CD format PDF files only. I am no longer printing the book, it is far too large and expensive to print and ship. I will give former customers a discount of $20 on the new text, which is just short of 500 pages, and includes a full section on Cheating and Internal Theft in Casinos. A lot of the materials have been updated (especially those parts written prior to 2005), and all of the materials written since then are now part of the textbook. The book is in use at College of Southern Nevada for its beginning Surveillance course, and of course I am using it in my own training programs. The discount can be obtained by returning the earlier edition CD. The Manual costs $85 including standard mailing within the US. It will be a little more if you want it quicker than four-seven days, or if you want it shipped outside the US. The purchase agreement is that you can use it for the company you work for, including electronic copies and printing, but you cannot distribute beyond that. If you resell or redistribute any of the materials beyond this, you are in violation of copyright laws. Sorry, but I too have  to make a living and safeguard the copyrights. I am still prepared to sell complete custom training programs to casinos, especially those who are operating two or more properties. These programs take a bit of time to prepare, as they are customized to the gaming and regulatory environment of the casino(s) involved. Please give me a bit of lead time. In order to set up a customized program, I need to study local and state laws. I am already very familiar with NIGC regs, but would need to look at a copy of the compact with the state, and any state laws regarding gaming. This is especially important in the sections dealing with regulation, detention, and cheating.

It's News Time:

(Email me if any of the links don't work for you and I will send the text.)

Busts and Scams:

While dining with wife at friends at one of the casino restaurants, Resorts Casino CEO Dennis Gomes observed something suspicious, and ended up by tackling a thief. See the story We all worry about card counters, shuffle trackers and hole-carders, but what about the guy who simply exploits the marketing department as his form of advantage play? I have seen a number of questionable marketing programs over the years, but this one has to be the most expensive to date. See the story Mr. Zender also has a few comments to make about this player and his (and others') strategies. See Bill's article A former dealer at the Marina Bay Sands casino has been jailed six months for committing criminal breach of trust. He was busted with $15,000 worth of chips concealed in his sock. See the story A lawsuit filed in federal court in mid-September alleges that money placed on account with the Full Tilt Poker website had not been kept secure but had been transferred to personal accounts of several of the company's owners. See the story Further information on this scam can be found at this page. [Editorial note: this is one of the reasons that Casino Surveillance News does not accept ads from online gaming sites. The online gaming business is unregulated, and the fact that, in order to get redress on any complaint requires a lawsuit in another country, where the activity in question may not even be illegal, makes online gaming far more of a "caveat emptor" situation than one might readily believe. See the following story for another reason we do not accept advertising from online gaming sites.] Beware of any online gaming site using BLR Technologies software. At least two online casinos use software that cheats craps players, two leading gambling statisticians say. See the story A related article with links to source appears here. The lawyer for a man claiming he was sucker-punched by a Detroit Police officer inside the MGM Grand Casino wants an independent review of the officer's actions. See the story (including video) Two Massachusetts state senators said they would have voted for a "cooling off period" blocking legislators from working for a casino for five years if they had been given the chance. As it turned out, a vote on an amendment establishing the five-year period was pushed aside for a weaker, one-year ban. See the story [and yes, there is a reason this story is in "Busts and Scams"] Wynn Las Vegas says a group of craps players who won $700,000 in July cheated the system, and the resort is suing them. According to report, the casino took notice when two players won $145,000 on seven throws of the dice on July 17. See the story Another story on this is linked here, from Las Vegas And another here (Ed.Note: below, in the Keynote Article area, is a link to an instructional article by a very respected colleague regarding the dice slide scam.  I have never seen more information on this one packed into less print space.] Hong Kong police arrested 14 men allegedly involved in a 25 million HK$ loan loan-sharking racket linked to two Macau syndicates. The gangs targeted Hong Kong gamblers in local casinos. See the story Criminals have pulled off more successful scams this year than in the past, said the director of surveillance for the L’Auberge du Lac casino in Lake Charles, La. He doesn’t attribute the cheating boom to the sour economy. Rather, he said, “I think it’s the timeless cat-and-mouse game between casinos and the people who want to steal from them.” This story details scams from the past year in baccarat, roulette and other games, as well as collusion between Surveillance and the criminals. See the story Atlantic City police will soon have access to the casinos’ surveillance systems to "help them fight crime." Billed as an emergency-response and anti-terrorism measure, it gives police complete access to casino surveillance systems as well as hospitals and other institutions. See the story [Ed. Note: does it ever end? Who, exactly, will have access to this information, and how will it in fact be used? These links go beyond local police to federal levels, allowing surveillance by the Fed (Big Brother, King Obama's minions, etc) of people at their recreation and other activities. The measure is funded by Homeland Security, which was established with extra-constitutional powers by Congress (Patriot Act), and this one goes far beyond that. I really think this needs to be seriously looked at, as to its constitutionality. Besides that, what authority do the police have to secretly observe people when they are involved in law-abiding activities, and who else will this information be given or sold to? A subpoena for recordings of specific criminal activities is one thing, but access to the entire operation of a casino and the activities of its patrons is something else. Once again, we are witnessing a government-sponsored bid for access to and control of private lives and activities being sold on the basis of greater "safety and security." And once again, there is a reason this story is put into the Busts and Scams section.]

“A society that will trade a little liberty for a little order will lose both, and deserve neither." Thomas Jefferson

The promotional videos accompanying the launch of Homeland Security's  ‘See Something, Say Something’ campaign characterize “suspicious activity” as a whole range of mundane behaviors, including opposing surveillance, using a video camera, talking to police officers, wearing hoodies, driving vans, writing on a piece of paper, and using a cell phone recording application. This one has to be seen to be believed. It seems designed to distract and overwhelm both law enforcement and private security with reports of ordinary behavior. See the story See also this article [Tell me: what is Homeland Security, as a branch of the Federal Government, trying to distract us from seeing? Alternatively, what are they trying to sell us? Distraction is, as well as an integral part of most scams, a common selling technique: When you are selling something, and someone asks a question that has an embarrassing answer, or none, the salesman diverts your attention to something else. Is the Fed selling their product through fear?] A trio of law enforcement agencies is investigating an apparent major theft from the Santa Ysabel Casino in northeast San Diego County, California. See the story The founder of the "Girls Gone Wild" video empire has upped the ante in a legal dispute over a $2 million casino debt with Las Vegas Strip casino mogul Steve Wynn and the Wynn Las Vegas resort.  See the story A casino Surveillance worker injured when he fell out of his chair while trying to prop his feet on the desk has lost a round in his bid to collect worker's compensation insurance payments. See the story It took a ''high-value'' gambler five minutes to create the paperwork that duped the Crown casino into advancing him $125,000. See the story Three Malaysian men were each jailed in Singapore for 45 months for conspiracy to pass off fake casino chips as genuine. See the story The latest in the Pham false shuffle scam [Below, in the Keynote Article section, is a link to an instructional video on false shuffles, specific to baccarat but also useful for blackjack.]

Online Poker News:

I. Nelson Rose, a distinguished senior professor at the Whittier Law School in Costa Mesa, Calif., said he’s pessimistic about the passage of legislation because federal lawmakers this session have demonstrated they can’t come to an agreement on any significant legislation. See the story Professor Rose's articles are available at his website, GamblingandtheLaw.com. You should read both his articles and his blog, which you can access at the top of his web page. A specific article regarding the politics, in California, of legalizing and regulating online poker can be found at this page.

Other Casino News:

A federal judge refused to impose a shroud of secrecy around an overtime lawsuit filed by nine personal security officers for Las Vegas Sands Corp. CEO Sheldon Adelson and his family. See the story Steve Wynn’s revolutionary policy of requiring hundreds of card dealers to share tips with supervisors does not comply with Nevada law, a state judge has ruled. See the story

Keynote Article:

This month's "article" is not by me. I have put together a collection of articles and video clips by respected colleagues, all of which I think you should see. Far be it from me to promote a "rival's" business, but the fact is, these people are very good at what they do. I have learned immensely from Bill Zender, and Willy Allison is another in the list of people I have to acknowledge for "people I have learned from." I would like for you to look at what these people have said, learn from them. However, when all is said and done, they aren't selling the programs that I have available. Heeere's Willy on Procedures, and its application to preventing players, even "valuable and desirable players," taking advantage of the casino. [My own series on procedures is more focused on what we in surveillance need to do. And I have an article, published here, on aspects of marketing scams, both from the outside and from the inside of the casino.] Willy and Bill video, on the false shuffle scam. Here's Bill on Dice Sliders. And here is Willy again, on taking advantage of casino patron-recruiting programs * * *

Currently Available Programs:

CSN's complete, on-site, one-payment permanent training program, customized for YOUR casino operation, can still be set up for you. We can accommodate privately owned, corporate, or tribally owned casinos outside of Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Please see what is available at this page: http://casinosurveillancenews.com/surveillance-training-programs

WE STILL SET THE STANDARDS FOR TRAINING OF CASINO SURVEILLANCE

and for

BASIC SECURITY TRAINING FOR CASINOS:

That's all for this month, Folks. Sponsors for this newsletter: Casino Surveillance Operations Manual, 2011 Edition:  inquire with booksales@casinosurveillancenews.com If you cannot access the Internet site casinosurveillancenews.com from the computer where you receive the newsletter, please re-subscribe from your home address or other email address. Many of my subscribers may have restrictions on their internet access at work. You can now subscribe to the newsletters from any page of the website at www.casinosurveillancenews.com Mailing List Policy: Our mailing list will never be sold to ANYONE, and we will never send spam. No special mailings will go out for advertising purposes, unless I judge that it will be of real use and real benefit to you, the readers. The only use for this list will be the newsletter and any major flash that looks important enough that you will all want to know. Copyright © 2011 by Jim Goding. All rights reserved. Unauthorized sales or duplication by any means is a violation of law and of the proprietary rights of the author. Purchase this author’s work at www.casinosurveillancenews.com.

September 2011

Jim Goding image CSN Newsletter

Casino Surveillance News, September 2011 Welcome back to Casino Surveillance News, the longest-running trade letter for our little niche in the casino world. This entire newsletter can be viewed at http://casinosurveillancenews.com/ The news-only portion can be seen at http://casinosurveillancenews.com/newsletter-2 Interesting reading and viewing: http://casinosurveillancenews.com/training-materials/slot-cheating-devices CSN News: Sorry for the missed month (again). We just got our newly-revised textbook completed, as well as training presentation materials complete for my current employer. I put in about 200 hours on this alone, in addition to handling about 30 hours of shift work a week, since mid-July. You can now order the textbook through this email address: booksales@casinosurveillancenews.com Details on the book are available here:  http://casinosurveillancenews.com/bookstore It costs $85 including standard mailing within the US. It will be a little more if you want it quicker than four-seven days, or if you want it shipped outside the US. The purchase agreement is that you can use it for the company you work for, including electronic copies and printing, but you cannot distribute beyond that. If you resell or redistribute any of the materials beyond this, I will come after you. Sorry, but I too have  to make a living and safeguard the copyrights. I am still prepared to sell complete custom training programs to casinos, especially those who are operating two or more properties. These programs take a bit of time to prepare, as they are customized to the gaming and regulatory environment of the casino(s) involved. Please give me a bit of lead time. A new Keynote article follows the news. This news section includes both July and August, as I was too pressed for time to send out a newsletter at the beginning of August.

It's News Time

(This month's news includes some older stuff from July and August. Many of you have seen some of this stuff through other communication lines. But it is all good. Email me if any of the links don't work for you and I will send the text.)

Busts and Scams:

Two New York City men were charged with conspiring with baccarat dealers to cheat Mohegan Sun out of hundreds of thousands of dollars. The dealers were marking cards with a thumbnail. The two dealers have also been charged and are awaiting trial. See the story Baccarat Card Cutting Scam: a number of stories regarding the alleged card cutter group and similar scams have come through in the last two months. I have posted these on the website at this address: http://casinosurveillancenews.com/baccarat-scams-2010-2011 Another group managed to get shuffling machines in Macau fitted with concealed cameras, which then could be downloaded and read, giving the cheaters the complete sequence throughout an entire shoe. This group managed to cheat the casinos out of $24 million before the scam was revealed. See the story [[Note: I received most of these about a month before I have been able to get them posted on the net. If you are interested in receiving this type of information on a regular basis, as soon as it is released,  and in joining a professional network at no cost,  email me at jimgoding@casinosurveillancenews.com and I will issue an invitation. Please let me know your position and where you are working, or send the email from a "work" address that shows you are currently working in Surveillance or Security or an executive or managerial position at a casino. I am always interested in expanding my own network, and you will also acquire connections with many others who are knowledgeable regarding scams in the casino business. You will receive emails from the network when new scams are found.]] A former Singapore casino dealer has been sentenced to two years' jail for criminal breach of trust, after pleading guilty to the offence. He was running a "friends and family" cheque-change scam, giving extra smaller-denomination chips when breaking down large denominations. He is charged with over $100K in theft. See the story An Oak Ridge, N.J., man has been accused of using small pieces of sandpaper to mark playing cards at the Sands Casino Resort Bethlehem.  See the story After getting busted for a single slot machine in a small store in Tennessee, the owner asked police why they were bothering him when a full-scale poker gambling operation was running just down the street. Eight raids, an undetermined number of poker and blackjack table, video poker machines, and $50,000 later, Knox County sheriffs have uncovered illegal casino-type operations across the county. See the story The death of a man who suffered a heart attack following an altercation with bouncers at Melbourne's Crown Casino is being investigated by Victoria's homicide squad. See the story A group of security officers countersued retired NBA "enforcer" Charles Oakley, charging he has assaulted Las Vegas casino workers at least three times since 2005 ―but has repeatedly avoided arrest because of his celebrity VIP status. See the story A faulty slot machine at a government-owned casino in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan., has been yanked after operators discovered it was delivering over $200 worth of playing credits for just $50. See the story A Sands, Bethlehem (Pennsylvania)  table games dealer was arrested after allegedly placing house money in his tip jar. See the story An internationally acclaimed blackjack dealer has been arrested for stealing millions from the Holland Casino, after a trainee blackjack dealer witnessed his collusion with players and frequently overpaying winning bets by thousands of dollars using ‘sleight of hand’ techniques. A police source revealed the colluding dealer is allegedly a member of the powerful Sun Yee On Triad, the largest international Chinese Mafia sect in the world, numbering over 40,000 members and a half million associates. See the story A Lake Tahoe casino, formerly owned by a man who was killed by a car bomb in the late 1960s, revealed a completely walled-in and inaccessible safe during renovations construction. The safe is to be opened on national TV. See the story For the first time in all my years actually working in casinos, I am looking at a possible attempt by a casino to cheat, putting the license (worth billions) at risk in order to stop play on a hand with less than $5000 wagered. See the story A partner in a multimillion-dollar sports betting operation has been arrested on charges of stealing $482,883.  See the story In a related story, the Nevada Gaming Control Board suddenly became very interested in the sports betting group. A police officer accused of cheating at blackjack at an southern California casino pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge and was placed on probation. See the story Price Waterhouse Coopers has stepped down as outside auditor for the casinos run by the Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians. The was no reason given. The firm's decision came at the same time FBI agents subpoenaed records from the tribe's elected chief. See the story For the latest in the Las Vegas Wynn casinos tip-sharing suit, where casino mogul Steve Wynn decided unilaterally that the dealers would be sharing their tips with their supervisors. See the story This suit has been going since 2009, when Wynn decided he would bring his supervisor's pay levels up to what the dealers were making in tips by appropriating a percentage of the tips. [Note: I have made number of comments on this story over the last couple of years. Here is a new one: if the floor supervisors (conveniently called, now, "team leaders," in order to take them out of the management category so that Wynn could give them a share of the tips) are taking a share of the dealer tokes, are they obligated to put tips into the pool  which they receive from players? Or are these tips, never reported before these people suddenly became "team leaders," simply ignored? In most casinos, people with the authority to issue comps are generally considered "management," and as such are not allowed to accept tips. That doesn't mean they don't get them, it just means it is generally under the table---because accepting tips, when one is in a management position, is usually considered a conflict of interest. So, here is the question: are these "team leaders" obligated to contribute to the tip pool from what they receive, or is this conflict-of-interest money simply ignored, as it has been for decades? Personally, I think that, regardless of any money they receive from the dealer tip pool, floor supervisors should still be prohibited from accepting tips: how many people are capable of turning down a request for a comp for a meal for four at the $50-a-plate restaurant when they know they are going to receive a $25 or $50 tip for writing the comp?] The Bellagio Bandit might only have to do three years in prison for his $1.5 million heist at the Bellagio, but a different judge slapped Anthony Carleo with a six- to 16-year sentence for sticking up the Suncoast.  See the story An arson attack on a casino in the northern Mexican city of Monterrey has killed more than 50 people. Several gunmen burst into the building in broad daylight, dousing it with fuel and setting it alight.  See the story

Internet Poker News:

(I am including a new category in the NEWS section of the newsletter to help my readers keep up with the current information on Internet Poker, its possible legalization, and government activities related to it. Last newsletter, in July, several major players in the internet poker world got busted by US Attorney General operations, and the ripples from those busts are still spreading. Nevada Gaming Control Board has  issued a draft of proposed regulations governing Internet poker, a first step in establishing a framework for licensing online poker operators by a Jan. 31 deadline. See the story The American Gaming Association will push new legislation in the autumn favoring Nevada and New Jersey as licensing and regulatory authorities in a future US e-gaming market. See the story Last month we reported that Washington DC had begun the process of legalization of internet gambling within the District. For further updates, see the story here, exposing possible corruption and questionable political deals [big surprise] behind the legislation. See the story

related links:

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2010/may/17/gray-outmaneuvers-fenty-on-lottery/

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2010/may/19/gray-met-with-lottery-executive-over-contract/

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2010/jun/9/shaky-businesses-suits-trail-dc-lottery-partner/

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2010/jun/23/dc-attorney-checks-out-lottery-contract-partner/

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2010/jul/5/dc-lottery-partner-has-chancy-background/

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2010/jul/20/dc-official-calls-for-probe-of-lottery-pact/

Other Casino News:

Wynn Las Vegas became the first casino to legally take wagers on non-sporting events in July. See the story The Connecticut Indian tribe behind the sprawling Mohegan Sun casino is set to launch a new business with plans to expand the Mohegan brand and its casino expertise from East to West. See the story A Texas billionaire has bought the Trump Marina hotel-casino, and is now working on renovations and renewals to bring it up to international gaming standards. The acquisition, in the face of Atlantic City economic downturns, is more than a bit of a surprise in the gaming world. See the story A proposed regulation to divert most of the money from unredeemed slot machine tickets to the state of Nevada has moved forward. At issue is an approximate $43 million per year, mostly in very small tickets. Unredeemed slot tickets normally go back to the casino after the expiration date (90 to 180 days); the proposed regulation would send 75% of the money directly to the state, and the remaining 25% would go to the casino and be taxed as income.  See the story Atlantic City's 11 hotel-casinos escaped major physical damage from Hurricane Irene. One Boardwalk gaming executive said the "lost weekend" may have cost Atlantic City's beleaguered casino industry $40 million to $45 million in gaming revenues. See the story Caesars Entertainment Corp. paid out $7.75 million in bonuses to key executives for their efforts in slicing more than $100 million in company costs. The largest payment was $1 million to Caesars Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Gary Loveman.  See the story [For an editorial opinion on this, go to my political blog at http://jimgoding.blogspot.com/ ]

Keynote Article:

Indicators of Cheating, Theft and Crooked Play

By Jim Goding, with thanks to Gary L. Powell and Bill Zender The following is a partial listing of "indicators," or "tells," of possible cheating or theft, internal or external, crooked play or advantage play. None of these tells is definite in itself. One, or especially more than one of these tells being present gives you a good reason for further investigation. They indicate that something might be wrong and the person bears further watching.
Slot Cheaters and Thieves:
  • Rubbernecking
  • Looking at the cameras, avoiding personnel, especially security and suits
  • Dropping machine-malfunction claims when asked to wait for verification (false claims)
  • Any repeating pattern of unusual activity on machine
  • JDLR ("just don’t look right")
    • Dirty, tattered clothing and shoes: if he has no money, why is he in a casino?
    • Leg jumping (uncontrolled rhythmic muscle spasms)
    • Concealed identity (hat covering face, etc.)
    • Observing people, not machines (property theft, such as purses)
Counterfeit and slugs
  • Feeding the validator and cashing with no play (counterfeit cash or money laundering)
  • Rejected bills fed to several machines until one accepts it
  • Will feed many bills to machine which accepts the bill
  • Short or no play, immediate cash-out
  • Money into machine from one pocket, cash-out proceeds to another
  • Feeding coin and cashing with no play (slugging or counterfeit coin or tokens)
  • Sorting coins (slugs, shaved coins or counterfeit tokens)
  • Coins falling through repeatedly
  • Both hands in coin tray while cashing, but no bucket
  • Catching the coins to muffle the sound (slugs)
  • Too many fills on the same machine
  • Unusual methods of feeding coins
    • Slamming coins into chute
    • Forcing coins
    • Fast-feeding coins (indicates coin acceptor malfunction)
  • Coins of wrong denomination found in hopper
Devices, bill validator, credit meter or coin-out scam
  • Blocking the front of the machine
  • Hand on the coin slot moving, but no coins going in (yo-yo or clicker device)
  • Cash-out taking too long for actual amount of credits (optic or other coin-out device)
  • Start-and-stop cashing, running only a few seconds at a time (device)
  • Too many fills on the same machine
  • One player cashing out where another played (optic devices, shims on coin machines)
  • People splitting up the money after changing to bills
    • (team activity on a number of scams)
  • Candle on the machine covered (concealing open machine doors or other difficulty)
Money Laundering
  • Concealed Identity
  • One player cashing out where another played
  • People splitting up the money after changing to bills
  • Feeding the validator and cashing with no play (counterfeit cash or money laundering)
  • Short or no play, immediate cash-out
  • Money into machine from one pocket, cash-out proceeds to another
Self-exclusion or prior 86
  • Concealed identity (hat covering face, etc.)
  • One player cashing out where another played
Theft from drop area
  • Diving under the machine
  • Candle on the machine covered (concealing machine open doors or other difficulty)
  • People (blockers) crowding around the machine
Credit punching ("silver miner" on old coin machines)
  • Roaming slots areas with no play, checking machines
  • Avoiding personnel, especially security and suits
  • Systematic casing of entire slots floor, bank by bank
  • Following a set pattern through slots areas on repeated visits
  • Dropping machine-malfunction claims when asked to wait for verification (false claims)
  • Any repeating pattern of unusual activity on machine

Table Games Cheats and Scammers

General:
  • Rubbernecking
  • Tracking Pit Bosses
  • Refuses to give name
  • Won’t talk to floor people
  • Casing games (looking for weak dealers)
  • Buy-ins stop at around $9000 (concealing identity)
  • Will not cash $10,000 or more at cage, pockets chips
  • Large-denomination chips to pocket, attempting to conceal winnings)
  • Concealing identity
  • Checks cameras when approaching Pit or table
  • Large buy-in, little play (possible counterfeit)
  • JDLR
Advantage Players:
  • Only gives name when losing (doesn’t want name on records as a winner)
  • (BJ)
    • Observes game from start of shoe, comes in mid-shoe or departs (back-counting)
    • Betting spread, variations in betting through a deck or shoe
    • Basic Strategy variations consistent with large and small wagers
  • Hats always over face, sunglasses, wigs, disguises (known card counters)
  • Won’t talk to floor persons or players
  • May speak during shuffle process or dealer change only
  • Brings large amounts of checks on first appearance
  • Eyes fixed on dealer hands, slumped in third base or center field (hole-carder)
  • Wins consistently on large bets
  • Player with large bets "helping" other players make decisions
  • Signals between players and non-players (hole carding, card count team)
  • Large buy-in, little play (also possible counterfeit)
Bet Cap and or pinch
  • Hands over betting area with chips
  • Double handling of cards
  • Player tries to keep his hands on the money
  • Concealing wager with hands or cards
Other Past-Post
  • Hands over betting area with chips
  • Distractions on game
    • late bets
    • spilled drinks
    • loud, sudden noises such as shouts, hand clapping, etc.
  • Claims of dealer error dropped when asked to wait for verification
  • Habitually makes one or more bets at last second (craps, roulette, baccarat)
  • Chips changing hands between players (roulette)
  • Handles checks in the betting area when cards are out
  • Wins consistently on large bets
  • Signals between players and non-players
Card Switch
  • Large bet next to small bet, elbow to elbow
  • Mucking hand, concealing cards in hand
  • Playing two hands, double handling cards
  • Handling or covering cards after decision
  • Dealer distracted during player decision process
  • A lot of motion and clutter on the table, lighters, smokes, drinks, etc
  • Wins consistently on large bets
  • One hand kept concealed below table
False Claims
  • Claims of dealer error dropped when asked to wait for verification
  • Multiple claims on same game
  • Insists on seeing the game tape himself when an error has been claimed
  • possibly checking quality of Surveillance coverage for later action
Card marking
  • Conceals cards in his hands (crimper, dauber, or card mucker)
  • Wins consistently on  large bets
  • Colored glasses or removes thick lenses to play
  • Handles cards roughly (card bender, crimper)
  • Turns some cards over in hand (crimper, nicker)
  • One hand continually handling parts of clothing, face, etc. (possible daub)
Shiner
  • Eyes fixed on own hand, not following dealer motions
  • Eyes consistently divert to own hands as dealer cards dealt
  • Shiny surface in fixed position on table
Cooler deck, false shuffle
  • Game locked up (all positions occupied)
  • Wins throughout one whole shoe with large bets (esp. Baccarat)
  • Bets increase after shuffle
  • No actual cut of cards (cooler)
  • Bets all increase at same time (false shuffle)
  • Several people blocking table from other players (possibly cooler deck)
  • Too many spectators around table (can also indicate distract team)
Computer or card-counting device
  • One hand concealed off table or in pocket
  • BJ: bet variation and corresponding  basic strategy deviations
  • (Roulette, Baccarat) Earpiece or hearing aid on lead player
  • Slow cut or shuffle process

Dealers (collusion and theft)

General:

  • Does not clear hands before touching body
  • Sometimes, making a big production of clearing hands
  • Rubbernecking
  • Tracking pit boss
  • Glancing at cameras often
  • Bad attitude toward supervisors, or casino in general
  • Hostile to floor supervisor attention
  • Correcting own errors
  • Unexplained violations of procedure (card pickup, check handling, shuffle, etc.)
  • Cards not spread for camera and supervisor
  • Unexplained variations in speed or accuracy of dealing
  • Lifestyle far above apparent income level
  • Gambles heavily when off-duty
  • Drug or alcohol symptoms
  • Inconsistent competence at dealing
  • JDLR
  • Player complaints

Theft:

  • Hands in bankroll tray when at rest
  • Unneeded "straightening" of the bankroll
  • Cupped hand at rest
  • Does not clear hands after handling chips in tray
  • Adjusting clothing or hair without fully clearing hands first
  • Concealing chips with cards, or cards in or over float tray
  • Take and pay with multiple colors in hand
  • Does not show open hand before breaking down winning wagers
  • Adjusting clothing after "straightening" tray on arrival at game
  • Unexplained and undocumented losses on games
  • Excessive errors or errors not notified to Surveillance
  • Uncapped tubes of higher denomination checks on low-action games
  • Missing chips, especially higher denomination
  • Craps: working stacks in higher denomination than needed
  • Roulette: does not notify on high-denomination non-value chips

Collusion:

  • Checks on payouts, buy-ins or color-outs not proven correctly
  • Pays multi-denomination bets in a single stack
  • Variation from learned motor skills
  • Unusual "flubs" in normal, well-trained motions
  • Dropped chips, flubs in card delivery, etc.
  • Unexplained variations in speed or accuracy of dealing
  • Holds or handles decks and/or cards in unusual manner
  • Unexplained motions during dealing process
  • Cards not spread for supervisor and camera
  • Cannot read cards on recordings, especially "bonus" games
  • Roulette: dealer consistently watches wheel as he releases the ball (attempting to hit a particular area of wheel)
  • Certain players consistently return to same dealer
  • Dealer meeting players outside the Pit
  • Consistently low (or high) PC on a dealer’s games
  • Excessive (out of proportion) tips to a particular dealer
  • Large jewelry (thumb rings, pendants, smooth shiny belt buckles)

Marking Cards:

  • Constantly touching face or clothing before handling cards
  • Bandaids (conceals sandpaper or "nicker" object)
  • Failure to "call out" or get approval on large buy-ins or color outs
  • Calls out when floor boss is busy at another table

Floor Supervisors, Box persons

General:

  • Unexplained variations or violations of procedure on games supervised
  • Rubbernecking (box person or floor person always knows where the boss is)
  • Glancing at cameras
  • Unusually high standard of living for the apparent income
  • Gambles heavily when off duty
  • Drug or alcohol problems
  • Meets customers outside the Pit
  • Low PC on games in his or her Pit (especially with certain dealers)
  • Bad attitude toward the company or its customers
  • Afraid of Surveillance (won’t talk to Surveillance, even required notifications)
  • Close personal friendship with specific dealers
  • Refuses (fails consistently) to correct certain dealers for procedural violations
  • Illegible signatures on fills, credits
  • Errors on table opening and especially closing paperwork: missing chips
  • Blaming Surveillance when making corrections

Theft (often in collusion with dealers):

  • Hands in the bankroll or on cash at any time (other than box person)
  • Fails to clear hands after handling checks or cash (box person)
  • Cupped hand
  • Cash not spread for camera
  • Unexplained losses on certain games
  • Soft count tally disagrees in major amounts with pit records of cash drop
  • Large-money players not entered in rating system or notified to Surveillance

Marker Scams (collusion with players, requires dealer cooperation, even if under duress):

  • Meeting players outside the pit
  • Certain marker players have consistent winning record
  • Consistently short play
  • Illegible player, floor supervisor or dealer signatures on markers
  • Unexplained procedure violations on markers
  • "Forgotten" notifications on large markers
  • Markers signed off the table
  • Collusion with dealer theft or cheating:
  • Illegible signatures of fills, credits, game opening or closing paperwork
  • Discrepancies between closers and actual count

Rating and Comp Scams (collusion with players):

  • Non-existent buy-ins for certain players
  • "Average bet"  data inconsistent with reality
  • Players rated as very high action not notified to Surveillance
  • Player complaints about missing comp value for play
  • Eats often on comp at high-level restaurant
Remember, your greatest indicator is always your own knowledge of the normal behavior patterns in any environment. If it doesn't look right, it is time to investigate. When you see the tells, look further. Jim Goding Copyright (c) 2011 by Jim Goding. * * *

Currently Available Programs:

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Casino Surveillance Operations Manual and Gaming Glossary: inquire with booksales@casinosurveillancenews.com If you cannot access the Internet site casinosurveillancenews.com from the computer where you receive the newsletter, please re-subscribe from your home address or other email address. Many of my subscribers may have restrictions on their internet access at work. You can now subscribe to the newsletters from any page of the website at www.casinosurveillancenews.com Mailing List Policy: Our mailing list will never be sold to ANYONE, and we will never send spam. No special mailings will go out for advertising purposes, unless I judge that it will be of real use and real benefit to you, the readers. The only use for this list will be the newsletter and any major flash that looks important enough that you will all want to know. Copyright © 2011 by Jim Goding. All rights reserved. Unauthorized sales or duplication by any means is a violation of law and of the proprietary rights of the author. Purchase this author’s work at www.casinosurveillancenews.com.

New Text Now Available

Casino Surveillance Operations Manual,

2011 Edition

is now available in CD format.

Visit the Bookstore to order, or for more information This Manual, in two earlier editions, is in use in over 100 casino Surveillance operations across the globe. Earlier editions have been translated into Russian, Italian and Spanish (I cannot vouch for accuracy of translations). CSOM has been updated to include a new section, including photographs, on Cheating and Advantage Play, and lessons from my Casino Surveillance Training Courses (text and photos only). The book is now available in hard copy through College of Southern Nevada bookstore. CSN will sell only in CD format, due to restrictions and costs of printing color photos for hard copy distribution.