Gambling News

The Court Sides with The Golden Nugget In a $1.5 Million Dispute

- February 18, 2015 By Oliver Young -


Whether The Golden Nugget will get the $1.5 million back remains unknown for now.

One of the stories that probably will not end in the near future is the dispute between a group of 14 gamblers and the Golden Nugget Atlantic City Casino. The case was opened in 2012 and all this time the court can’t seem to decide which side should get the $1.5 million.

However, the Judge Donna Taylor made the last of a series of decisions claiming that the Golden Nugget should get its money back since the game violated the Casino Control Act. In her final decision she wrote that “The dealer did not pre-shuffle the cards immediately prior to the commencement of play, and the cards were not pre-shuffled in accordance with any regulation.” According to her, anyone who will read literally the regulation will understand that the game was not authorized.

This decision is the most recent event connected to the case, but also probably not the last one since The Golden Nugget Casino has already expressed its expectations that the decision will be appealed.

What Really Happened

As the Australian medium News reports, on April 2012 a group of 14 people wanted to play a game of mini baccarat. However, the players noticed that the deck of cards used for the game hadn’t been pre-shuffled and therefore they were able to realize the pattern in which the cards were emerging on the table.

Naturally, this helped them to win 41 hands in a row. The gamblers even drastically increased their bets and at first they played with only $10, but then upped to $5,000 per session. By the end of their adventure they had won $1.5 million out of which $500,000 were paid to them and the rest $1 million remained in casino chips.

The deck of cards, in fact, was supposed to be pre-shuffled from the Kansas City manufacturer which supplies the casino. However, a company’s representative said in court that it failed to shuffle them. The Golden Nugget had a separate dispute with the manufacturer, but they resolved it with a confidential agreement.

At First the Casino Wanted to Let the Players Keep Their Money

Maybe the most amusing fact about the dispute is that the casino is owned by a Texas billionaire Tillman Fertitta who originally wanted to let the players keep the money they have won. However, he asked the gamblers to drop other claims they have made against The Golden Nugget. The group didn’t want to drop the claims and therefore the case was brought to court.

Up till now, there have been a series of decisions that first favoured the casino, then the gamblers and then the casino again. It is not known when the process will be over and how it will end.

However, this is not the first time for a court to have to solve disputes between players and casinos. Last year, The Ritz Casino won a £1 million court battle against a woman who refused to pay back the money she owned.



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