As China's first casino, albeit a cashless one, opens gaming executives and service providers around the world are watching to see if it will result in the introduction of real gambling in the country. Jesters Casino Bar, part of the new Mangrove Tree Resort World on Sanya Bay on Hainan Island, China, is the first approved form of gambling in China outside of Macau. Gamblers can gamble with real money but cannot win cash - instead they win point redeemable for goods and services at the Mangrove Tree Resort. Casino watchers expect that within a year or two, the Chinese government will allow real money payouts at this location and many others. If gambling is legalized in China, the government and service providers stand to earn billion and billions of revenues a year. You can read more from Reuters here.
It's National Problem Gambling Awareness Week in the US. The NPGAA is a campaign by the US National Council on Problem Gambling to educate the public about problem gambling. We don't have a similar awareness campaign on a national level in Canada although we have similar gambling addiction problems but on a much smaller scale. Of all the stories I've read about NPGAA over the past few days, Michael Burke's post here called "Allen Iverson Should Accept This Crisis as a Gift" is the best.
Ohio lawyer Michelle Smithern lost her license to practice law indefinitely today after a hearing by the Akron Bar Association. Smithern started gambling on the internet in 2004 and as she continued to gamble, she also began using alcohol in excess. Over a two-year period, she took about $108,000 from her firm to gamble online. In 2009, she was convicted of felony theft for stealing.
Thomas Koch, a Milwaukee lawyer, has admitted stealing US$2.4 million from a client over a five year period to gamble, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports. He was a regular customer at the Potawatomi Bingo Casino, whose website surprisingly spells "paysbig.com." Koch is no longer practicing law and is seeking treatment at a gambling addiction centre. If convicted, Koch faces a ten year prison sentence.
Jayshree Asalan, a lawyer from Chatworth, who won $7.9 million at a slot machine at the Suncoast Casino in South Africa, is being told that she can't keep the win by the KwaZulu-Natal Gambling Board. The Gaming Board told Asalan that the slot machine was malfunctioning when it registered the $7.9 million win. Asalan told reporters that she will sue the casino and gambling commission over the loss win.