card cheating scammer sentenced

Asians behaving badly... card cheater edition! Yesterday in San Diego, Phat Ngoc Tran was sentenced to 45 months in prison for his role in a large casino card-cheating scam involving more than 30 people defrauding casinos across multiple states out of approximately $7,000,000: Man Sentenced For Casino Card-Cheating Scam.

Another defendant, Phuong Quoc Truong, aka "Pai Gow John," had his sentencing postponed until November. Truong admitted to charges of conspiracy and racketeering, and could face up to 20 years in prison for his guilty plea. He admitted trying out false shuffles at blackjack & bacarat tables.

The scam dates back to 2002 where Truong admitted cheating as a dealer at Sycuan Casino, then grew to involve Barona Casino. Investigators said the scam moved on to other casinos from California to Connecticut, Washington, Indiana, Mississippi, Nevada and Louisiana, and into Canada.

The ring, based in San Diego, went so far as to bribe dealers in other states and fly them out for training in the shuffle. They sent scouts to Mississippi to assess a casino's vulnerabilities to the trick.

When everything was set, they would move in and occupy several seats at a table run by a bribed dealer. They would bet like they knew what cards were coming -- which, thanks to the false shuffle, they did. More here: Busted card-cheating ring found success in simplicity. And when they make the Hollywood movie about this, all the actors will white!

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