Casino scams are as old as the casino industry itself. They are unwanted stakeholders in the business, and although over the years, casinos have tried their best to keep scammer at bay, there is no letup in the numbers of scams that rocked the industry in a big manner. Today, the threat of scams and online hacks is even more apparent, given the availability of highly sophisticated technology around us. In this article, we give you brief details of the top ten scams that have hit the casino industry hard in the past:
- New York Roulette Scam:This scam occurred in 2012 and executed by a crime gang in New York. The gang contained between 50 and 70 people who entered the game by applying low bets as their first step in executing theft. One of the gang members used to distract the dealer while another stole chips of the particular color. These chips were then secretly passed on other players who were playing at other tables. Using this tactic, the gang was estimated to scam up to $2000 per game, although the loot’s exact amount is not in the public domain.
- Roselli Brothers: With the help of a computer hacker, Roselli Brothers pulled out data of people having excellent credit ratings. Roselli Brothers then opened accounts on these people’s names and deposit their own money on these accounts to receive the credit lines. For the long five years, Roselli Brothers were able to continue with their scam, and by the time law was able to find their modus operandi, Roselli Brothers were already dead.
- ATM Scam: In the year 2012, police charged a total of 14 conspirators, alleging that these people had stolen over $1 million from ATM kiosks of Citibank in Nevada and California. These criminals exploited the 60-second window of opportunity that allowed multiple numbers of unrecorded transactions. Ara Keshishyan was the leader of the group who recruited a large number of people to open multiple accounts with Citibank and then use these accounts in order to withdraw up to 10 times more money that was deposited in their accounts. All this happened in a 60-second opportunity in which multiple transactions can be completed without leaving any record.
- French Cigarette Scam: The year 1973 witnessed one of the greatest and most sophisticated scams in casino history. The heist was executed by a casino dealer, his sister, and brother-in-law. The dealer created a small radio transmitter, and he got it fit into a pack of cigarettes. The receiver of the transmitter was fit into a roulette ball that was used on the table. The brother-in-law of the dealer would play the role of the player while his sister pressed the button of the transmitter while holding the pack of the cigarette. Once the button was pressed, the ball from the wheel would descend and land in one of the six probable numbers with an impressive accuracy of up to 90%. With a period of just one week, the group was managed to win around $1 million before finally, the law caught on them.
- Cutter Gang: This gang made millions by cheating at Baccarat in 2011. The gang would accept the cut deck offer, and one of the gang members would drag the cutting card before moving it back in the pack. The same member would use a tiny camera hidden in cufflink to know the value of cards. This information was then passed onto another member, and the gang would then win big in almost every game.
- Contact Lens Scam: As the name reveals, the heist involved using contact lenses that were used to read special ink markings made on cards by the group of scammers consisting of one Frenchman and three Italians. The scam took place in 2011, and the group was able to con around $84,000 from a famous Princes Casino in the Cannes.
- Ritz Roulette Scam: A group of three gamblers from Siberia and Hungary managed to make around $2.1 million using the laser technology to win big in the roulette game. The group had laser scanners installed on their phones, which were, in turn, connected to the computers. The computers utilized the data from scanners to analyze the roulette ball’s speed and predict the results. It’s important to note that the group was arrested and presented before the court but finally let go by the magistrate as the technique used for predicting results was not considered illegal.
- Phil Jr. Scam: Poker player Phil also cheated his way to $9.6 million using the technique of Edge Sorting. This technique involved memorizing imperfections in certain cards and using these abnormalities in order to identify cards rightly in the future. The technique cannot be termed as a cheating tactic, although the player is facing a lawsuit filed against him by different casinos.
- Pai Gow John Gang: Pai Gow John convinced around thirty casino dealers to accompany him in this heist. The corrupt dealers would give the impression of shuffling cards, but in reality, cards only made noise with no actual shuffling taking place. The main player in the game would smoke a cigarette while communicating the information to the other player through a microphone hidden in the sleeve. The main player also signaled other players by using a specific pattern of fingers over the cigarette. The gang was able to amass $7 million from a total of 25 different casinos before finally caught by the law.
- Australian Danny Ocean: By hacking the surveillance system of the crown casino located in Melbourne, an unknown man was able to pull off a heist amounting to $33 million AUD (equivalent to $30 million USD). There are different conspiracy theories about how this heist was carried out, although nobody, in reality, knows the exact details of the scam. Just so you know, the hunt for the culprit is still on, but the chances of catching the real culprit seem to be very remote.
It’s very difficult to make the casino system immune to scams. Although casinos today are using new-age technologies to foolproof themselves against scams, the possibility of a heist is always there. The only key to remaining secure against scammers is to continuously upgrade the technology while keeping a tight vigil on all possible loopholes which scammers can exploit to pull off a heist.