Nevada’s casinos are popular, and people there can enjoy gambling games as much as they want to, as long as they don’t try to cheat on them. This is why these casinos have an infamous “black book” which contains all the names of people who are banned from the casinos. The list is quite lengthy as many players tried to scam the casinos in one way or another. Recently, two names have been added to the book after two men found a way to cheat on craps.
The cheating happened at Bellagio Casino after the two men managed to earn almost $1.2 million by utilizing a “hop bet” scam on craps games, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal. Their names are Anthony Grant Granito and James Russell Cooper. These two men will no longer be welcome at any of the casinos in Nevada. The Nevada Gaming Control Board updates the black book of Nevada, and every once in a while new names appear here.
Granito and Cooper did not act alone. They were a part of a group of four men who all participated in this sophisticated cheating scheme. The first time they scammed a casino was in the Strip Casino, and the operation took place between August 2012 and July 2014. The other two people are Jeffrey Martin and Mark Branco. The thing is – Branco and Martin were actually dealers in Bellagio back in the day. Branco was the leader of the group, and he plotted a scheme to scam the casinos in Nevada. The main person responsible for revealing the fraudulent behavior was another craps dealer in Bellagio. He immediately reported his suspicion, and it turned out that he was quite right.
Branco and Cooper would work on the same table. Whenever a shooter would throw a dice, Martin or Granito would say something that suggested a hop bet. This is very risky, and it is considered to be a type of oral proposition for which number would be the next one. The dealers that participated in the scam would pay to those who made an oral proposition as if they guessed it right.
It’s important to know that there were no designated spots for hop bets back at that time. In order to prevent their scam from being discovered, the players would first lose thousands of dollars before they retrieve it along with additional cash.
The four men were charged with cheating and theft at gambling. They were sentenced to prison in 2016, and two of them even made it to the black book. It took courage and planning to execute the plan, but the maths was ahead of them. The main reason why they were exposed was because one of them managed to guess something that had 452-billion-to-1 odds, which is pretty impossible. The dealer who worked in the craps table nearby noticed that, and the four men were soon prosecuted.
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