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Casino crimes in New Jersey: Swindling and cheating

Last month, we discussed how New Jersey's Casino Investigations Unit divides its enforcement efforts between cracking down on traditional crime -- disorderly conduct, defiant trespass, prostitution, robbery, etc. -- and violations of the Casino Control Act.

We also began taking at closer look at how gambling-related offenses are defined under this historic law, starting with the crime of using a device to obtain an advantage at a casino game. We'll continue this effort in today's post.

Swindling and cheating

The Casino Control Act dictates that an individual commits the offense of swindling and cheating if he or she knowingly or purposely utilizes any of the following in order to win money/property, reduce a losing wager, or attempt to accomplish either act:

  • Tricks
  • Sleight of hand performances
  • Fraudulent cards, dice, devices or other schemes

As far as potential punishment is concerned, it depends entirely upon the amount involved in the alleged swindling and cheating incident:

  • If the amount involved is $75,000 or more, a person can be charged with a second-degree crime.
  • If the amount involved is more than $500, a person can be charged with a third-degree crime.
  • If the amount involved is at least $200 but no more than $500, a person can be charged with a fourth-degree crime.
  • If the amount involved is less than $200, a person can be charged with a disorderly-persons offense.

It's important to note that each incident of swindling and cheating may be prosecuted separately, while the amounts involved in each incident of swindling and cheating that are committed in furtherance of a single scheme or "course of conduct" may be combined for the purposes of determining the potential punishment/grade of the offense.

We'll continue examining more casino crimes in future posts ...

As always, consider speaking with an experienced legal professional as soon as possible if you've been charged with committing any manner of criminal offense at one of Atlantic City's many gaming establishments.

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