Monthly Archives: February 2010

A brief look at crime 2/15 – 2/21

Man shot and killed with baby in his arms

Tammy Spivey can’t stand to live in her duplex on the corner of West 8th Street and Mangousine Avenue anymore. “It’s just really really sad,” Spivey said. This is where her boyfriend Dennis Andre Williams died. “Last night he was on the street gambling, someone saw that he had a couple of dollars in his pocket, so they thought they would follow him and rob him, right in front of the house.” But as Williams was about to walk inside with his 8 month old baby, his life took a terrible turn. “He was shot him with the baby in his arms and the baby fell to the ground and it bruised his face up everywhere,” Spivey said.

Mother kills 2 children over family feud

Mother killed her two children and later attempted to commit suicide in the district town yesterday.Sources said the tragic incident occurred at Hazipur Nayapara in the town following a family feud between Awlad Hossain and his wife Rabeya Begum. Mother Rabeya suffocated her son Asad (5) and daughter Tisha (3) to death and tried to commit suicide after she engaged yesterday morning in a fierce altercation with Awlad over her husband’s gambling.

Gambling addict gets three years for theft

A gambling addict who stole more than $460,000 from her employers – causing other staff to lose their jobs – has been jailed for three years. Toni Whatarau, 46, had blown all the money on pokie machines, her lawyer Eric Forster told Napier District Court yesterday. She could only offer $3000 reparation.  Whatarau, who had earlier pleaded  guilty to the theft, was addicted to gambling and had begun counselling, Mr Forster said.

Stephen Lee Arrested, Gambling Scandal in Snooker

Famous British snooker player Stephen Lee has been arrested in an ongoing match fixing and illegal gambling probe. A UK police spokesperson confirmed to London media 35-year-old father of four Stephen Lee had been arrested in relation to a 2 year invesigation into gambling and match fixing in the game of snooker. The spokersperson said: “A 35-year-old man from Wiltshire has this morning been arrested on suspicion of cheating. This follows a joint operation where West Midlands Police have assisted the Gambling Commission, following their concerns about suspicious betting patterns.”

Paralegal Gets 46 Months in $1.7M Theft

As a paralegal was sentenced to a 46-month federal prison term this week for stealing $1.7 million from the Connecticut law firm for which she formerly worked, new indictments were also announced in unrelated cases against at least two employees of different law firms in other states. Patricia Baddeley Meehan, 44, handled real estate closings for Berman & Russo and reportedly wrote 77 checks to herself from a client funds account. She is accused of using the money she stole from the firm to pay the personal credit card charges with which she financed her gambling and lavish lifestyle, according to the Hartford Courant

Man dead after SWAT standoff

Police have found a man dead inside a home after a SWAT standoff Monday afternoon. BSO, along with the SWAT team, surrounded the home at the request of the Seminole Tribe police department. Police have been working with the FBI and the Secret Service to locate a man, who allegedly robbed the Seminal Casino Coconut Creek at gunpoint on Jan. 29th. “One individual came into the second floor poker room, the cashier area, and stole several thousand dollars,” said Gary Bitner of the Seminole Tribe Police Department. Linda Martin, and her neighbors, watched as canines and officers closed in around a home on Northeast 56th Street and Third Avenue 4 p.m. “We heard shots, and that’s when the SWAT team and everyone came out,” said Martin.

Man charged in shootings of Calif. Couple

A man has been charged with murder and attempted murder after police say he killed a Southern California woman and critically injured her boyfriend while pretending he wanted to buy their car. Police say Loera went to the Westminster, Calif., home of Julie Palasko and Dennis Koire on Sunday, pretending he wanted to buy a vehicle they were selling, an Infiniti sedan. Prosecutors say Loera then shot Palasko to death and wounded Koire before ransacking their home. He then fled to Las Vegas in their sedan. Police say Loera crashed the car into a ditch while attempting to flee from security at a Nevada casino.

Woman charged over $2 million school scam

Mihoko Gaspar, 39, is accused of defrauding people who planned to send their children to the Australian Language Institute at Surfers Paradise. Police alleged in Southport Magistrates Court that Gaspar convinced parents to give her money in the belief they would receive dividends from any profits made by the school. However, the address Gaspar gave her victims for the school is  an empty office, and the phone has been disconnected. In documents tendered to the court, police claimed Gaspar had a gambling addiction and owed $1.6 million to casinos in Australia and New Zealand.

Borrego admits to stealing $3.4 million

The one-time business manager for the district admitted to cooking the books and taking $3.4 million. Borrego pleaded guilty to six embezzlement charges, four tax evasion charges and one charge of using her position to take money. While she was the business manager for the school district, she wrote hundreds of checks to herself from January 2005 to August 2009 when she was finally caught. No one knows where the money is. Borrego admitted to the superintendent that she had a gambling problem when first confronted about the missing money.

Man gets life sentence for strangling wife

MANILA, Philippines–A construction worker will spend the rest of his life behind bars after a Quezon City judge found him guilty of strangling his wife as they were arguing in a church compound nearly seven years ago. Delantar was accused of killing his wife, Evelyn, in a construction site at Christ the King compound in Barangay Libis on Aug. 5, 2003. Court records showed that he allegedly strangled his wife with a clothesline after they fought over his gambling habit.

For more information on the dangers of gambling, please visit CASINO WATCH, & CASINO WATCH FOUNDATION

Florida considers complete Vegas-Style gambling

The saga in Florida continues.  Casino Watch Focus has been reporting on the state of the gambling compact with the Seminole Indians and most recently reported that the compact had been voted down in legislative committee.  Now it appears that Florida is considering full scale commercial gambling as a means to balance its budget. The Orlando Sentinel reports:

Rep. Ellyn Bogdanoff, R-Fort Lauderdale, who strongly opposed the expansion of slots in South Florida, now says that since gambling is everywhere in Florida, she supports a “free market” approach. She is pitching a “Gaming Equalization Act” to lure a half-dozen gambling executives to build beachside hotel-casinos.

One of the Legislature’s staunchest conservatives, Rep. Alan Hays, says he wants the state to get into the gambling business directly by owning casinos and hiring private operators, similar to the state Lottery.

An online source is reporting that one Vegas investor is willing to spend $3 billion to develop a lavish casino resort and thinks Florida is just the place:

Sheldon Adelson, a billionaire global resort developer and CEO of Las Vegas Sands Corp (NYSE:LVS), tells The Miami Herald/St. Petersburg Times he is ready to invest up to $3 billion in a resort casino Adelson said his project would resemble a mega convention center housing malls, theaters, spas, hotels, restaurants and casinos. “We’re not interested in putting up slot parlors or a gambling den,” the entrepreneur told the newspaper.  “We want destinations and integrated resorts.”

It is still early in the process but groups are already speaking out.  Citizen Link reported:

John Stemberger, president of the Florida Family Policy Council, said it would negatively affect the state’s image and is the wrong way to finance the future.  “It’s unstable,” he said. “It’s economically destructive. It has enormous social consequences: Divorces, suicide, crime, increased addictions and bankruptcies. It’s just a bad deal.”

Let your Lawmakers know that you are not in favor of building of a 3 billion dollar casino that will bring in some tax dollars in exchange for making losers of the people.  Florida is full of seniors who will be great candidates for over the top addiction.  Lawmakers who vote to encourage this kind of harm have forgotten what it means to be a servant of the people in Tallahassee.  In effect they will let thousands of families experience certain ruin in exchange for their cut of casino win.  That’s what the people of FL have to look forward to if action is not taken.

For more information on the dangers of gambling, please visit CASINO WATCH, & CASINO WATCH FOUNDATION

A brief look at crime 2/8 – 2/14

Author ‘killed man over owed money’

A MELBOURNE author killed a man he owed money to by repeatedly bashing him on the head with a hammer, a court has heard. Prosecutors allege Douglas Fredrick Robinson, 63, murdered Michael Grech at Melton, northwest of Melbourne, in November 2007. Police found Mr Grech’s body wrapped in plastic nearly six months later in a shallow grave at nearby Toolern Vale.  Prosecutor Peter Rose, SC, said Mr Robinson, who had a gambling problem, had borrowed $15,000 from Mr Grech.

New Forest bank cashier who stole £40,000 of dementia victim’s cash jailed

A BANK cashier who stole cash from the account of an elderly dementia sufferer has been jailed for two years.  Gambling addict Daniel Moss, 21, took more than £40,000 over seven months from Leonard Poole, 90.  Mr Poole’s son Richard called for an investigation after his dad could not remember withdrawing large amounts of cash from the HSBC at Milford-on-Sea. It transpired the thefts had been made from Moss’s terminal, except one from a terminal left on by a colleague, prosecutor Rachel Robertson told Southampton Crown Court. “It was clear he had made the transactions and counter withdrawal slips had been forged,” she said.

RISKY BETS: VicRoads staffer steals $315,000 to feed pokies

A HAMILTON VicRoads chief who stole $315,000 to feed a poker machine habit has pleaded guilty and is expected to be sentenced to a term of imprisonment. Jennifer Maree Clarke, admitted to three charges of theft in the Warrnambool County Court relating to $315,185.45 stolen between August 11, 2005, and September 7, 2007. Clarke kept envelopes of each day’s takings, took cash and then tried to pay back the money with the takings from following days. She got further and further behind and her total personal gain from the 167 individual thefts over more than two years was $82,928.25. In the two years and four months since the offending was detected she has paid back $600.

Bartlett attorney with gambling problem stole from children’s trust fund, authorities say

James M. Hoots has been charged with stealing some $76,000 from a children’s trust fund and blowing it at the Tunica casinos. Hoots, whose practice includes probate work, has been licensed in Tennessee since 1990. The 56-year-old attorney was booked into the Shelby County Jail on Friday and is scheduled to be in General Sessions Criminal Court on Monday. He was to be released on his own recognizance. Authorities received a complaint several months ago that Hoots had taken money from the children’s trust fund without permission.

Woman invented child for benefits

A Canberra woman has admitted inventing a fictitious child, using the false claim to collect thousands of dollars in family tax benefits and blowing the money playing poker machines. The ACT Supreme Court heard prosecutors allege yesterday that former Centrelink worker Heather Lancelene Brown accessed her own files in the agency’s database to ensure that the money continued to flow. The 54-year-old, who has pleaded guilty to one count of financial advantage by deception, collected more than $7000 between 2002 and 2004 before her scheme unraveled.

Man Sentenced For Slaying Over Gambling Money

A man was sentenced to 39 years to life in prison Tuesday, for the slaying of a man after he won money gambling.  A judge sentenced Rodney Conley for the August 2008 slaying of Jess Lanier, 10TV News reported. Police said Conley shot Lanier after he won $7,000 at an Indiana casino, but Conley contended the gun went off as the two men were fighting over it. Conley was convicted of aggravated murder, 10TV News reported.

Federal probe of illegal online gambling nets first charge

A long-running federal probe of illegal online gambling netted its first charge Wednesday when a Kansas City man pleaded guilty to running a sports bookmaking business. Michael V. Badalucco, 26, admitted that he and others provided bettors with a toll-free telephone number or access to a Web site— both of which routed from Missouri through Arizona to a company in Costa Rica. In pleading guilty, Badalucco waived his right to have a grand jury review the government’s evidence and agreed to plead guilty immediately.

Wisconsin man indicted over $3.75 million Las Vegas gambling debt

A Wisconsin man has been indicted by a grand jury in connection with gambling markers totaling $3.75 million at two Las Vegas casinos. Christian Peterson is charged with drawing and passing a check without sufficient funds with intent to defraud, presumptions to defraud and theft, according to an indictment unsealed last week in Clark County District Court. During an eight-day period in April 2008, Peterson signed three markers totaling $300,000 at the Hard Rock Hotel and a marker for $3.45 million at Caesars Palace, the indictment states.

Despicable’ loan shark threatened to kill victims

A “despicable” loan shark who pocketed almost £30,000 from two vulnerable victims and threatened to kill those unable to pay him has been jailed for two-and-a-half years. Anthony “AJ” Johnson  charged up to 1,200% interest on some loans, according to officers who investigated his four-year reign of terror. One victim, a father of two, was forced to sell his flat and had to pay for Johnson’s family to fly to Spain for a holiday. A second had to flee his home after agreeing to testify.

Man accused of getting gun for casino killer

A man has been charged with illegally buying the gun that a former Indian casino worker used to kill his ex-boss and commit suicide last year in San Diego County. Prosecutors contend that Holley bought a 20-gauge shotgun under his own name from an El Cajon dealer on Dec. 24 and gave it to Donnell Roberts, who supplied the cash.  Five days later, Roberts used the gun to kill the head of the Barona Gaming Commission, Raymundo Casillas Jr., in his office outside the Barona Casino and Resort. Roberts then shot himself.

For more information on the dangers of gambling, please visit CASINO WATCH, & CASINO WATCH FOUNDATION

A brief look at crime 2/1 – 2/07

Gambling habit for St. Peters forger ends with 5 years in prison

St. Peters woman who forged college loan documents in her daughters’ names to support a gambling habit was sentenced Monday to five years in prison.  Cynthia M. Tiemann pleaded guilty in September on seven counts of felony forgery. She admitted taking out loans for nearly $140,000, pretending they were for her two daughters. Tiemann also forged her mother’s name as a co-signer.  Tiemann’s mother, Jean Terneus, 72, attended Monday’s sentencing in Circuit Court in St. Charles. She said her daughter is a good person whose gambling addiction led her astray. “It’s a disease, and it’s worse than drugs or alcohol,” Terneus said.

Brighton bank worker jailed after pocketing £90,000

An assistant bank manager who stole nearly £90,000 from elderly customer’s accounts to pay off gambling debts has been jailed for 12 months. Manager Cathy Otero, 57, of The Parks, Portslade, was jailed for 27 months in June last year for stealing £259,000 from customers.  A third colleague, cashier Ruth Dale, 49, of Cecil Road, Lancing, was given a suspended prison by magistrates last year after she admitted stealing £11,300.  Harvey, of Rudyard Close, Woodingdean, who has no previous convictions, admitted 13 charges of theft.

Thai Woman Stole Cars to Gamble Online

According to an article published yesterday by Thailand’s Pattaya People Weekly newspaper, a woman by the name of Chalitaoon was arrested by Huay Yai police on the evening of Tuesday January 26 under suspicion of having stolen a car. The 41-year-old woman was detained from a room she had rented at Kredkaew Village in Bang Saray.  Chalitaoon allegedly befriended the male owner of the car, only then to drug him and steal his vehicle. The woman intended to sell the car, and to use the money to feed her habit of gambling at online casinos in Thailand.

Ex-city clerk sentenced to 3 months for embezzlement

A mountain of gambling debt led the former city clerk of Lincoln to steal more than $46,500 in taxpayer funds over the course of two years. On Monday, Melanie Riggs was sentenced to three months in a federal prison in connection with the theft, which took place in 2007 and 2008. Riggs, 49, also will serve five months of home confinement and repay the money she stole under terms of a sentence handed down by U.S. District Judge Jeanne Scott.

State Police: Mother arrested for abandoning child while gambling inside Harrah’s casino

A New Orleans mother was arrested for allegedly abandoning her nine- year-old child outside Harrah’s downtown casino Sunday, State Police said. The child was found sitting outside the casino Sunday just before 4 p.m. Troopers assigned to the State Police casino unit said the boy told them his mother left him outside while she went inside to gamble. Troopers identified the mother as Yvette Lindsey, 41, of New Orleans. She was located inside the casino, arrested and booked with child desertion and contributing to the delinquency of a juvenile. Troopers determined that the child was left alone outside of the casino for approximately 30 minutes. He is now in the custody of his father.

Ex-Somerset school construction manager is accused of embezzling $2.1M from Bernards school district

A former Somerset County school construction manager allegedly tried to pay his gambling debts by embezzling $2.1 million from the Bernards Township School District, authorities said today. The former on-site construction manager for the school district, Robert E. Titus Jr., 52, of Jackson, who was employed by Aramark Corp. but worked in an office at Ridge High School, was arrested today along with three other men. The four were charged in connection with a scheme that for 5 1/2 years overbilled the affluent school district for boiler replacements, concrete work, door replacements and other general maintenance jobs, authorities said.

Cops: Ex-public defender cashed $1M in fake checks

Authorities say a former public defender printed $1 million in bogus payroll checks so he could gamble at casinos from Florida to California, sometimes using Web site logos to make the checks appear legitimate. Lt. Ed Baswell, a spokesman for the Bossier Parish Sheriff in Louisiana, says 47-year-old Charles Bradford was in jail Wednesday on $90,500 bond. Baswell says Bradford is wanted in Arkansas, California, Florida, Kansas and Ohio, and may have run the alleged scheme in other states.

Former dispatcher charged with stealing from police fund

Prosecutors say a former manager of Bellevue police dispatchers stole tens of thousands of dollars set aside for Bellevue’s Police Benevolent Association.  Friends and co-worker describe Pamela Rae Heide as likable and trustworthy. That is why so many people are surprised to learn she is charged with stealing more than $80,000 from the fund. The fund was established in 2000 to help fallen or injured officers. Some of the money was sent to the families of the four Lakewood officers who were recently killed. According to charging papers, Heide confessed to using 70 percent of the stolen money on casino gambling and the other 30 percent on bills.

For more information on the dangers of gambling, please visit CASINO WATCH, & CASINO WATCH FOUNDATION

A brief look at crime 1/25 – 1/31

Mother of toddler who was thrown onto freeway says she was out gambling, doing drugs

The mother of an Oahu toddler, who was thrown off a freeway overpass two years ago, says she was out gambling and doing drugs the day her son died. But it wasn’t made clear how her neighbor, murder defendant Matthew Higa, ended up with the child. When 23-month-old Cyrus Belt was killed, just about everyone in his life was an ice user, including his mother.

“You were using crystal methamphetamine at this time. Is that correct?” Peter Carlisle, Honolulu prosecutor, asked. “Yes,” Nancy Chanco, dead boy’s mother, testified. “Regularly?” Carlisle asked. “Yes,” Chanco replied. On January 17, 2008, her toddler was run over by a delivery truck after Matthew Higa threw him onto the H-1 Freeway from a pedestrian overpass.

Former Herkimer investigator sentenced, admits addiction

As his relatives wiped tears from their eyes Thursday morning, Robert Risi was led from a fifth-floor Herkimer County courtroom. About two hours later, the 18-year veteran of the Herkimer Police Department left the county court and jail complex in the back of a county sheriff’s deputy’s car.  He was on the way to begin his one- to three-year state prison sentence for stealing thousands of dollars from his police department’s evidence room to support his gambling habit. He has paid restitution of about $15,800.

Hinton, Okla., woman admits to embezzling $425K

A 34-year-old woman who formerly worked for the Hinton Economic Development Authority has pleaded guilty to two counts of felony embezzlement in an agreement that requires her to pay back $425,000. District Attorney Bret Burns said the agreement was made official Friday when Robin Dawn Ramming entered her guilty plea in Caddo County District Court. Burns said Ramming is to serve 10 years in prison. Authorities said the stolen money was used to pay for lavish family vacations and to support a gambling habit.

Tondo trader shot dead

A 31-year-old “sari-sari” store owner was shot dead by three unidentified gunmen who posed as customers in Tondo, Manila last Sunday night. Police identified the victim as Alberto Bancalem, married, of Building 14, Temporary Housing Unit, Tondo, Manila. The victim succumbed to bullet-shot wounds in his face and nape. Santos said they are investigating if the killing was related to the victim’s gambling habit as he was known frequenting the cockpit arena in their area.

Man poisons self, family in Bankura

A farmer poisoned to death his wife and children by serving them with poison-laced food before eating the same and committing suicide in Taldangra, Bankura, on Sunday night.  It was debt and poverty which led Debdulal Ghosh, a habitual gambler, to take the extreme step, said police. The other deceased have been identified as Bandana Ghosh (38), Seema (16) and Subhankar (8).

Nurse’s nightmare as husband was found hanged after gambling £20k

A NURSE’S husband was found hanged after he ran up tens of thousands of pounds of debts in her name. The newly-weds had been due to start a new life in Australia, where Angela already had a job lined up as an intensive care nurse. But Ms Roberts found her husband was not what he seemed.

She told the Mail: “In June last year I checked my bank statement, which should have been £6,500, but instead I was overdrawn to the tune of £1,500. I called him and he started crying, saying he was in a dark place. “The next day I went to the Halifax and an account containing £7,500 had been completely wiped out.” When confronted, Mr Barker, 33, denied his actions. But when she accessed his e-mail account, she discovered her husband had signed up to “every gambling website going”. She said: “One day I was happily married to my best friend and about to start a new life in Australia, and the next I had lost everything. My world was turned upside down in the space of a day.

Confessed gambler must pay back Honey Brook man

A Downingtown woman was ordered to repay her former employer, a Honey Brook businessman and commercial developer, more than $200,000 that she stole from him over a period of years to feed her gambling addiction. Dora Dianne DiLoreto was sentenced to serve three to six years in state prison after she admitted stealing tens of thousands of dollars from Lewis R. Frame Jr.

Bank Supervisor Jailed for Gambling Away Money

A former supervisor at the US bank BB&T has been jailed for 18 months, after it was revealed she had gambled away over $200,000 (£124,000) to feed her gambling addiction. Quiana Dantelle Ruffin admitted to stealing the cash in order to gamble online, purchase lottery tickets and make trips to the nearby Atlantic City. Ruffin pleaded guilty to embezzlement, which was found out in mid-2008, when a routine audit turned up cash anomalies.

Botched robbery leads to murder trial

In the capital murder trial of a Killeen man Tuesday, a Killeen woman testified admitting participation in the April 2008 robbery of an illegal gambling room that resulted in the death of 41-year-old Kimberly Tran. Dominique Neal, 23, told the court that on April 2, 2008, she helped plan and tried to halt the attack on the game room. She said that she and Bonnie Johnson had gone into the business to play the machines and were supposed to alert Oliver Julius Sowell, 23, when he should rob the establishment. She said she was about to call off the plan when Sowell allegedly arrived wielding a shotgun and got into a scuffle with the business owners. Shots were fired, and both Tran and her son, Vu Minh Le, 22, of Austin, were wounded. Tran’s son was left blind in his right eye and with a shattered left arm. Tran succumbed to a gunshot wound to the chest hours later.

Managing Director Gambles Away Millions

Paul Sadler, the former head of the Birmingham Institute of Research and Development Ltd, a subsidiary of the University of Birmingham, has been jailed for six years after admitting to embezzling £5 million. Working alongside fellow employee, Christine Eggleton, the pair managed to steal millions from the company, causing the development centre to come close to the brink of collapsing. Sadler, who suggested in court that he suffers from a severe gambling addiction gambled away £2 million in a Birmingham casino and began fabricating false invoices, which he’d use to fund his habit, as early as 1994.

For more information on the dangers of gambling, please visit CASINO WATCH, & CASINO WATCH FOUNDATION

Super Bowl Gambling – not as harmless as you might think.

Super Bowl Sunday brings about lots of excitement with the electricity of stats and facts, the Who Dat Nation and a Manning Legacy.  Super Bowl Sunday is also one of the largest social gambling events in the nation. The Morning Sentinel points to the 2007 Super Bowl as having an estimated $8 billion in wagers placed on its outcome. This flashy, center-stage event brings out several “social” gamblers, some of whom consider placing little bets here and there harmless. The article explains that experts have information to the contrary.

Guy Cousins, acting director of Maine Office of Substance Abuse, is referenced as estimating that 3 to 5 percent of those who participate in wagering will become problem gamblers. Another expert mentioned, Lee Thompson, president of the Maine Council on Problem Gambling explained, “We’ve seen an increase in the calls from Maine to the Nation Council on Problem Gambling hotline, from eight calls a month in 2003 to over 100 a month in 2006.”

It appears that the glitzy glam of the Super Bowl attracts people to make social wagers, a harmless bit of fun in their mind. But the dollar amount waged on the Super Bowl climbs each year, as does the number of problem gamblers. The Super Bowl garners over three times the amount wagered on NCAA basketball’s March Madness.

Is this a harmless Sunday addition to one of America’s most popular day of sports? The numbers show it only to be a growing problem.

For more information on the dangers of gambling, please visit CASINO WATCH, & CASINO WATCH FOUNDATION

UPDATE: Gaming Commission votes 4-0 to shut down the President Casino

Casino Watch Focus reported that the State asked the Missouri Gaming Commission to shut down the President Casino. The St Louis Post Dispatch is reporting that the Gaming Commission voted 4-0 to shut down the President, claiming the President’s decline has been deliberate:

When Pinnacle Entertainment bought the President Casino in late 2006, the casino on the St. Louis riverfront employed 552 people and took in $67 million a year from gamblers.

But in the next 2½ years, the new owner jettisoned the buffet, the deli, slot machines on the second deck and most table games. The staff was cut by more than half. Annual revenue dipped to $23 million.

That decline formed the basis for the Missouri Gaming Commission’s unanimous decision Wednesday to take the first step to yank the license of the President, which is housed on the historic Admiral boat at Laclede’s Landing.

Pinnacle Entertainment has 30 days to appeal the decision and be granted a hearing in front of the commission, but this decision could take months as it can go through the courts as well.  As the Post is reporting, Pinnacle will be challenging that decision:

A Pinnacle executive called the move outrageous and vowed to fight it. Jack Godfrey, executive vice president and general counsel for Pinnacle, said the company spent $45 million to buy the President out of bankruptcy and was willing to spend millions more to fix the boat’s aging hull. “We have done nothing wrong,” said Godfrey, who promised to “examine all our legal remedies.”

Stay tuned to Casino Watch Focus for updates regarding this situation.

For more information on the dangers of gambling, please visit CASINO WATCH, & CASINO WATCH FOUNDATION

State Regulators to ask the Gaming Commission to shut down The President Casino

Casino Watch Focus has been reporting on the situation regarding the President Casino’s license.  The Missouri Gaming commission has made its position very clear – they want the President closed down so the license can go to a new Missouri Casino, possibly in the Spanish Lake area of north St Louis.  Now the St Louis Post Dispatch is reporting that the State will be formally asking the Commission to shut down the Casino:

In a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission Monday morning, Pinnacle Entertainment, which owns the downtown riverboat, said it was told last week by state regulators that they will ask the Missouri Gaming Commission on Wednesday to close the President, effective July 1.

In a sharply-worded letter to Pinnacle’s interim CEO John Giovenco, Gaming Commission Executive Director Gene McNary says the company has let the casino operate for the last year at an “unacceptable level” and has no apparent plans to change that.

“It has become abundantly clear Pinnacle intends to hold on to the President’s license as long as possible with no intention of improving its operations,” McNary wrote.

Casino Watch Focus reported that Pinnacle planned to fix the hull of the Admiral so the President Casino would pass safety measures by the Coast Guard. In the letter filled with Securities and Exchange Commission, McNary was quoted as saying that Pinnacle’s efforts are just “another ploy aimed at retaining the President’s license while its operations continue to decline.”  In response, Pinnacle has filed a lawsuit in Missouri’s Western District Court of Appeals.

Contact your local representatives and let them know the General Assembly should take that license away from the MGC and thus protect the people of MO from yet another place to lose hard to come by money.  Surely 12 casinos in the State is enough.  Or is the General Assembly interested in making more losers in the State?

Stay tuned to Casino Watch Focus for updates regarding this situation.

For more information on the dangers of gambling, please visit CASINO WATCH, & CASINO WATCH FOUNDATION