The world of casinos and gambling has long been a fascination of many storytellers working in Hollywood over the years. The list of movies, good and bad, that are set in this industry is long and quite varied. It must be something to do with the thrill of the stakes – winning or losing.
The Frontier Gambler is one of the most recognisable characters from 19th-century America. Historically well-represented by both sexes, they found their way to the gaming tables from a range of geographical backgrounds, professions, and social classes, and were frequently of a different nationality since the USA was still so young.
They say that crime doesn’t pay, but for a few people it has – even if only briefly – and these gambling scams are proof of it!
When Willie Sutton, an American bank robber was captured in 1952 after a criminal career which spanned 40 years, he was asked why he had chosen the profession he had. His response was as stunning as it was simple. He answered that that is where the money is!
There is no question that casinos have incredible security. In fact, they have some of the most notoriously high security out of any venue in the world. But this doesn’t stop some criminals from taking a shot at a robbery. The vast majority of these attempts fail, and end with the criminals in jail, or worse. But sometimes, out of incredible effort, dumb luck, or a combination of the two, the robberies are successful.
A Catholic priest from Ontario, Canada has been jailed for two years for defrauding nearly CA$1 million (US$760,000) from desperate refugees to fund a self-destructive gambling habit, according to recent news reports.
The chance of walking into a casino as Joe or Jane Average and walkout Mr or Ms Millionaire is what keeps us going back. It’s a crazy world, filled with the possibility that you will suddenly getting your hands on vast amounts of money.
In Canada, Mitchell Sumka, a former financial advisor was recently sentenced to 27 months in prison for stealing money from his customer’s accounts to pay off gambling debts. The accused stole money from customer accounts held at TD Bank in the province of Manitoba, and went about doing so in some rather creative ways.
A former Victoria gaming minister is among those calling for investigations into Crown Melbourne. Tony Robinson made the call after the casino was accused of links with Chinse organised crime.
Working in a casino as a dealer takes a certain amount of discipline, and the temptation of pocketing a few chips must always be huge. Most dealers manage not to get their hands dirty, and then there are those that do. Then, there are those that do, and get caught.