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Gambling – definition of gambling by The Free Dictionary

When a farmer once got into the habit of going to Cutter, it was like gambling or the lottery; in an hour of discouragement he went back. Or a gambling hell,” said his brother reflectively. That was another thing, the men said–all the saloon-keepers had to be “Indians,” and to put up on demand, otherwise they could not do business on Sundays, nor have any gambling at all. The priests opposed both my fire and life in- surance, on the ground that it was an insolent attempt to hinder the decrees of God; and if you pointed out that they did not hinder the decrees in the least, but only modified the hard consequences of them if you took out policies and had luck, they retorted that that was gambling against the decrees of God, and was just as bad. He brought back one or two new habits with him, one of which he rather openly practiced–tippling–but concealed another, which was gambling. He was a doctor in the neighbourhood when he married her, and a man, I surmised, of some parts and promise, but, moving to town, he had fallen into loose ways, taken to drinking and gambling, and had finally deserted her for another woman–at the very moment when their first child was born. Your mother’s eyes are bad again; and your brother Berkeley has been gambling, and seems to think I ought to pay his debts for him. Your worship must know that this gentleman has just now won more than a thousand reals in that gambling house opposite, and God knows how. This young man was the nephew of one of the Nob Hill magnates, who run the San Francisco Stock Exchange, much as more humble adventurers, in the corner of some public park at home, may be seen to perform the simple artifice of pea and thimble: for their own profit, that is to say, and the discouragement of public gambling. In fact, I have no intention of going there again, since every one is for gambling, and for nothing but gambling. The only excesses indulged in by this temperate and exemplary people, appear to be gambling and horseracing. I asked, being in an idle mood, because, if an obvious ship’s officer, I was not, as a matter of fact, down at the docks to “look for a berth,” an occupation as engrossing as gambling, and as little favourable to the free exchange of ideas, besides being destructive of the kindly temper needed for casual intercourse with one’s fellow-creatures.

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Gambling – definition of gambling by The Free Dictionary

Conor McGregor accuses Floyd Mayweather of having ‘big-time gambling problem’ – Telegraph.co.uk

Mayweather then waved off the prospect of him also doing so, and similarly intervened when the same individual attempted to goad his Irish opponent, before repeating his insistence that he will win via knockout for the first time in six years.

The American has rarely remained aggressive in his fights, 26 of which he has won inside the distance, but he last won via stoppage against Victor Ortiz in 2011, and this also represents a significantly less competitive match-up.

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Conor McGregor accuses Floyd Mayweather of having ‘big-time gambling problem’ – Telegraph.co.uk

Casino gambling remains no dice for lawmakers in Kentucky – Kentucky Today (registration)

By TOM LATEK and MARK MAYNARD, Kentucky Today

FRANKFORT, Ky. (KT) Even with the state facing a projected budget shortfall and an enormous public pension debt, casino gambling remains off the table.

I havent heard any discussion of that issue and no one has talked to me about it, said Senate Minority Leader Ray Jones, D-Pikeville. Ive always opposed gambling, for personal reasons. For me to support any kind of expanded gaming, it would have to be very, very limited and controlled circumstances. Ive not seen any type of proposal that I could support.

Several other lawmakers interviewed on Wednesday said theyve heard no serious discussions about casino gambling as a revenue generator to bolster state finances.

Rep. Tim Moore, R-Elizabethtown, didnt see gambling going anywhere.

I havent heard anything that rises to the level of a buzz, just a little noise at this point that hasnt risen in volume, he said. There are always going to be a few that thinks casinos are the right policy for Kentucky, whether we need this money for pensions or the budget.

The reason for justifying it shifts, but the desire to have it never goes away.

Gambling in any form wont get any support from him, said Rep. Dan Bentley, R-Russell.

I havent heard the word gambling spoken of since we voted down the Fantasy Football, said Bentley, referring to ill-fated legislation that was quashed earlier this year. Im sure that Im not privy to everything, because there are cliques and all, but I havent heard anything.

The Fantasy Football proposal would have established a legal footing for paid-entry fantasy sports and regulation of companies offering them, like the biggest Daily Fantasy Sports operators, DraftKings and FanDuel.

The bill garnered a majority vote in the House with a 37-36 margin, but did not reach the 40-vote threshold required to advance it to the Senate (bills must be approved by two-fifths of the 100 members in the House).

The bill went from introduced making it through two committee votes to dead in just two weeks.

Plans announced by Churchill Down in June to build a standalone facility to house 650 historical horse race machines had some thinking it may be part of a larger effort by pro-casino forces for expanded gaming in Kentucky.

The Daily Racing Form reported the historic Louisville track plans to spend $50-60 million at the 85,000- square foot parlor, which received preliminary approval from the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission. It would be located near Churchills Trackside training facility and open in about a year.

The proposal marked a change in tactics for Churchill Downs, which has historically lobbied for a full casino and not sought the machines, which use the results of previously run races to determine winners and pay-outs.

Sen. Whitney Westerfield, R-Hopkinsville, said while he heard a few murmurs about addressing expanded gaming after Churchills announcement, it has since quieted.

I spoke with leadership, and they were unaware of anything that was going on. I havent heard those same rumors.

As a legislator, Im vehemently opposed to it, Westerfield said. I think its a regressive tax. Everyone agrees the Commonwealth needs more money, but shouldnt make it from lower or middle-class folks who dont have the money in the first place.

Westerfield, who on Tuesday announced he was a candidate for attorney general in 2019, said it would be a difficult road.

I would want to know if any legislation is constitutional and would pass constitutional muster. I didnt think the [horse] industry was on the same page anymore. I thought they were still in disarray over what they hoped to get, and couldnt find agreement.

Rep. Jill York, R-Grayson, said she hasnt heard anything from her region or in the annex or even the hallways about gambling.

I will say the new majority is being as transparent as they can into looking at everything, she said. There are some very real issues that are going to have to be addressed. I applaud out-of-the-box thinking, but the gambling box is one I havent heard talked of opening.

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Casino gambling remains no dice for lawmakers in Kentucky – Kentucky Today (registration)

La Salle limits downtown gambling parlors – MyWebTimes.com

The La Salle City Council is acting to stop the growth of video gambling parlors in the downtown area.

The seven-member council recently voted 5-1 to limit the number of parlors to five, the number currently operating. One council member, who works at one of the parlors, abstained from voting. If any of the five existing establishments close, they cannot be replaced; if all eventually cease operations, there would be no parlors.

Parlors need a liquor license from the city before they can obtain a state video gambling license.

The council member who led the effort, Mark Schneider, said a couple of downtown business owners told him they are troubled by the number of parlors that have popped up because mini-casinos “don’t fit” the hoped-for image of the business district. Specifically, business owners said parlors conflict with efforts to draw tourism and additional retail shops.

Three of the five downtown parlors are on one block, two on one side.

The parlor proliferation is dealing the downtown a bad hand, in the view of Amanda Andreoni, who owns Marien Mae Bridal Boutique.

“I’m very thankful the city has taken the necessary actions needed to ensure the integrity of our awesome downtown. We have so many businesses thriving, with momentum in place and vibrant entrepreneurs seeking a space for their business.

“La Salle must protect its investors and businesses that have worked so hard to create a fluent downtown, this was a positive move in the right direction,” Andreoni said.

Schneider noted the gambling establishments take up ground that could otherwise be used for prime retail space. Further, Schneider pointed out the city wants to obtain official historic status for the downtown, and if the Kaskaskia Hotel reopens, gambling parlors would be even more out of place.

There are 29 establishments in La Salle with state-authorized video gambling, of which 12 are downtown. Schneider noted that without gambling parlors, there still are seven downtown bars or restaurants with video gambling. La Salle’s cut of gambling proceeds is about $160,000 per year.

What are the thoughts of Ottawa Mayor Robert Eschbach?

“I’m not crazy about gambling establishments downtown, but we don’t try to regulate their number. Rather, we let the market take care of itself. Our downtown is vibrant, because we have a good mix of retail and restaurants and when you have such vitality, most gambling establishments can’t afford the rent,” Eschbach observed.

Eschbach added that several years ago, there were tattoo shops in downtown Ottawa, but those closed or moved.

There are no gambling parlors in Ottawa’s downtown, but a number of bars in the business district have video gambling. One gambling parlor that operated on the corner of Jefferson and La Salle streets has closed.

In Streator, there are no standalone downtown parlors, but several elsewhere and Mayor Jimmie Lansford said he doesn’t want to see more.

“A gambling parlor needs a restaurant-bar liquor license. There are a limited number of these licenses available and the City Council has said that’s all there’s going to be. I’d rather issue one to someone opening a restaurant,” Lansford noted.

The mayor added the market is saturated with gambling parlors and any new ones simply take revenue from existing establishments.

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La Salle limits downtown gambling parlors – MyWebTimes.com

Local addiction expert speaks on gambling, Powerball – WFMZ Allentown

Video: Gambling red flags

With all this excitement around the $700 million Powerball jackpot, a local organization is reminding folks that the lottery’s not all fun and games for everyone. Playing the lottery is a form of gambling.

Michael Reese is the Gambling Awareness Coordinator with Council on Chemical Abuse (COCA) in Berks County. Reese said gambling addiction is as debilitating alcohol addiction.

“Of all the addictions, gamblers are twice as likely to attempt suicide because if they are a million dollars in debtit’s kind of hard to work your way out of that,” Reese said.

He said raising awareness about gambling addiction is important because it is widely viewed as a socially acceptable behavior.

“We want to discourage adults from giving lottery tickets or any form of gambling to kids because it does start young and it’s socially acceptable and highly addictive,” Reese added.

There are some red flags that can signal if someone has developed a gambling problem including constantly thinking about gambling; mood swings; betting more than the budgeted amount; and lying about his or her whereabouts and how much money was spent or loss.

Reese said there are some ways that can help control these impulses. He said the key is remembering that gambling is a form of entertainment — not a way to earn money.

“Set a budget, stick to your budget. Maybe even use a buddy to keep you honest on the budget. And, this is all entertainment money, and also budget your time,” Reese said.

There are also ways to get help including reaching out to COCA or by calling 1-800-GAMBLER.

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Local addiction expert speaks on gambling, Powerball – WFMZ Allentown

Alabama Attorney General Drops The Hammer On Illegal Gambling – Yellowhammer News

Yesterday Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall and Jefferson County District Attorney Pro Tem Danny Carr announced their court victory over an Alabama gambling facility.

Under Alabama law, it is illegal to operate a slot machine in the state, so when Marshall and Carr learned that Redibids (an online gambling site) was soliciting business in Alabama, they went after them.

In a decision by the Jefferson County Circuit Court, they ruled that offering computer systems with software that included illegal sweepstakes games fell under the umbrella of Alabamas anti-gambling laws. The court also held that all the seized machines will be forfeited to the state, and the seized money will be placed in the general fund.

The AG also announced that he has issued a cease and desist letter to the companys website, which Marshall claims is making online gambling accessible in the state of Alabama.

In a statement on the case, AG Marshall said,

It is my duty as Attorney General to uphold Alabama law and protect those who may otherwise unwittingly fall prey to this type of illegal activity. I was pleased to work side-by-side with District Attorney Danny Carr and Jefferson County Sheriff Mike Hale to ensure that those who willingly seek to take advantage of Alabamians and break our laws are held to account.

Jefferson County District Attorney Pro Tem Carr added,

The Jefferson County District Attorneys Office is determined to protect our citizens from all forms of financial exploitation. Bid City profited by targeting our communities, and misrepresenting their slot-style machines as legal sweepstakes. My office is bound to uphold the law of the State of Alabama, and is dedicated to dismantling all illegal enterprises operating within our jurisdiction. I thank the Jefferson County Sheriffs Office for its tireless investigative work, and the Attorney Generals Office for its assistance in this case.

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Alabama Attorney General Drops The Hammer On Illegal Gambling – Yellowhammer News

Sky Lake, owner found guilty in gambling case – Huntington Herald Dispatch

IRONTON Sky Lake and its owner, Tracy L. Ellis, were found guilty of several gambling-related charges Thursday in Lawrence County Common Pleas Court.

More than 20 slot machines were confiscated from Sky Lake along County Road 32 north of Chesapeake three years ago when authorities executed a search warrant at the pay fishing lake.

Authorities also confiscated $68,071.96 during the 2014 raid on the property. While the pay lake remains in business, the three-story building at the property underwent two fires in late January 2015. At least one of those fires was determined to be arson, according to Chesapeake fire officials.

Ellis entered no contest pleas to two misdemeanor gambling charges and four counts of possession of criminal tools. Two other charges of money laundering were amended to possession of criminal tools and he also entered no contest pleas to those charges.

Lawyers representing Sky Lake entered no contest pleas to two charges of money laundering and a charged of engaging in a corrupt activity was amended to attempt to engage in a pattern of corrupt activity.

Judge Andy Ballard set final sentencing in the case for 9 a.m. Friday, July 21.

Ballard made a finding of guilt in the charges against Ellis and Sky Lake.

The case was prosecuted by Dan Kasaris, an assistant Ohio attorney general, serving as special Lawrence County prosecutor.

Since Ellis has no prior criminal record, he can’t be sentenced to prison on the low felony counts under Ohio law.

A business can be indicted under state law if the business is involved in criminal activity, Prosecuting Attorney Brigham Anderson said earlier.

An investigation into Sky Lake was undertaken by the prosecutor’s office, the sheriff’s office and the gambling enforcement section of the Ohio Attorney General’s office.

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Sky Lake, owner found guilty in gambling case – Huntington Herald Dispatch

A bad bet: Expanded gambling is no state budget solution – Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

A bad bet: Expanded gambling is no state budget solution
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
A 2014 report by TheStreet.com ranked Pennsylvania as the second-heaviest gambling state in the nation after Nevada. While revenue sources for the new fiscal year's budget remain up in the air, legislators in Harrisburg seem determined to increase the …

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A bad bet: Expanded gambling is no state budget solution – Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

One Percent Of Keno Profits To Go Toward Gambling Addiction Treatment – New Hampshire Public Radio

More than five decades after establishing the first state lottery, New Hampshire is for the first time dedicating a portion of lottery profits toward treatment for gambling addiction.

Governor Chris Sununu signed a bill Wednesday that legalized the electronic lottery game Keno, using the revenue to boost funding for full-day kindergarten programs.

Under the bill, 1 percent of Keno revenue will be set aside for treatment, prevention, and research to address problem gambling.

New Hampshire Council on Problem Gambling Executive Director Ed Talbot says that funding is much needed.

Currently there are limited services in the state, he said. Myself and one of the people on the board have a Massachusetts certification to counsel people with a gambling problem. Theres no certification currently in the state of New Hampshire, nor a program to do it. Wed like to be involved in setting up something.

Its not yet clear how much revenue Keno will generate.

While the game is now legal, individual cities and towns must decide whether to allow it in their communities before it can operate.

You can read the entire Morning Edition interview with Ed Talbot below:

This council was formed three years ago what does it do?

The council is meant to serve as the resource for the state of New Hampshire for problems associated with gambling. So far, there hasnt been anything in the state other than three gamblers anonymous meetings all located in the southern tier of the state. Estimates in terms of the number of problem gamblers in the state range from 8,000 pathological or compulsive gamblers to 40,000 problem gamblers.

Whats the definition of a problem gambler?

A problem gambler is a person who may encounter a problem with their gambling, whether it be something on the home front, a financial situation, something with employment, a legal thing. He or she addresses the problem and then either refrains or refuses to gamble, or gambles responsibly again. The compulsive or pathological gambler is a person who crosses that line where theres no turning back. Its only going to get worse. That can result in death, imprisonment, or hopefully treatment.

And you suffered from a gambling addiction at one point in your life. Given that experience, what concerns do you have about expanded gambling and relying on it for revenue?

First of all, the NH Council itself and me personally dont take a position for or against gambling. Ninety-five percent of the population can gamble and gamble responsibly. They take a fixed amount of money they want to wager, go down to Foxwoods or Mohegan Sun or even in the state, and make their wagers. Win or lose, thats it, and they leave and have a good time. But that other 5 percent is the percent we want to address. Weve been fortunate in New Hampshire from day one, the executive director of the NH Lottery Commission Charles McIntyre has always said he feels theres a social obligation for those that provide gambling to address the downside, which is problem or pathological gambling.

And the NH Lottery Commission is your funding source.

Yes. Theyve provided $25,000 each year for the last three years.

One percent of the revenue brought in by Keno will go toward funding gambling addiction treatment. Where will that money go?

I definitely think it will allow us to expand services. The 1 percent that is dedicated in the bill actually goes to the Department of Health and Human Services, and then that money will be dispersed by them for problem gambling services in the state. Two years ago at their request, we drew up a comprehensive plan for problem gambling services in New Hampshire that involved treatment, recovery support, research, educational things, advocacy, all of those things that should be addressed. Currently there are limited services in the state. Myself and one of the people on the board have a Massachusetts certification to counsel people with a gambling problem. Theres no certification currently in the state of New Hampshire, nor a program to do it. Wed like to be involved in setting up something.

Is there an estimate of how much this 1 percent of revenue will bring in?

I dont know if they have any idea of how much Keno will actually bring in. I think it will be a substantial amount of money.

Are you envisioning having staff?

Yeah, we would definitely have staff. Right now, Im a one-man show. I try to do as many presentations as I can. I man the cell phone I use for a help line. I dont mind that because this is something Ive always wanted to do. And I also feel like if I can help one person, and pass on that message of hope that theres a better life out there.

Can you walk me through the process of what happens when someone calls you looking for help?

I have to tell you most of the calls we get are not from the problem gambler. Theyre from the spouse, a loved one, or a parent. But when the gambler does call, I initially try to meet with that person if I can, get them to a gamblers anonymous meeting and accompany them if that can be set up. But most of the time its talking to a loved one. The advice I give to everyone is theres two things you can do: you support every attempt the person makes toward recovery, except give them money. Two, you do nothing to that encourages them to keep gambling, especially giving that person money.

The infrastructure has been lacking overall, and I imagine with a dramatic expansion of gambling, theres going to be more call for these services. How do you see that playing out? How do you get services to the North Country and rural areas?

One of the things I think is very beneficial to us is working with the people in the substance use disorder field. Ive been very fortunate to be able to go around to recovery coach academies. Theres a lot of these people who are in recovery from substance use, and talk about problem gambling and identifying, and doing some screening. Seventy-two percent of problem gamblers have an alcohol problem. Thirty-eight percent of problem gamblers have a drug problem. Theres a lot of people who are dually addicted. I know myself if I had continued to gamble I positively would have had an alcohol problem.

So is the hope to use the knowledge and expertise of these addiction counselors around the state to screen for that and get problem gamblers into services?

What Id like to see is in these recovery centers across the state, which is a wonderful resource for people who have a substance use disorder, and get a gamblers anonymous meeting in there. Go in there periodically, screen people. We dont have to reinvent in the wheel or create a whole new division. That is already in place and I think we could work through there and really provide some help.

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One Percent Of Keno Profits To Go Toward Gambling Addiction Treatment – New Hampshire Public Radio

Gambling ballot initiative tops 100000 signatures – Holmes County Times Advertiser

News Service of Florida

TALLAHASSEE – Backers of a proposed constitutional amendment that would restrict the expansion of gambling in Florida have submitted more than 100,000 petition signatures to the state.

The political committee Voters In Charge spent about $472,000 from April 1 to June 30, with almost all of the money going to petition printing, gathering and verification, according to finance reports. The committee had submitted 104,416 valid petition signatures as of Thursday and needs to submit a total of 766,200 to get on the November 2018 ballot, information on the state Division of Elections website shows.

The proposed constitutional amendment, if approved next year, would give voters the “exclusive right to decide whether to authorize casino gambling” in the state. It would require voter approval of casino-style games in the future. The Florida Supreme Court this spring signed off on the proposal’s ballot wording, a key first step in the process. Disney Worldwide Services has been a key backer of the initiative, contributing $400,000 in June and $250,000 in April, finance records show.

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Gambling ballot initiative tops 100000 signatures – Holmes County Times Advertiser

Growth of Cryptocurrencies Drives Esports Gambling Further – TheStreet.com

As cryptocurrencies bubble, esports arelooking to take advantage.

Two companies announced initial coin offerings of cryptocurrencies on the Ethereum blockchain for esports gambling within a week of each other in June. Their developers said the burgeoning industry of professional video gaming and soaring value of virtual currencies have fed the interest for such ventures that could further develop the betting community within esports, including on competitive matches such as the new Overwatch League.

“People want to bet, and they want to bet on esports,” John T. Holden, a visiting scholar at Florida State University’s department of sports management, told TheStreet recently. “What we’re seeing in North America is a legitimization of esports.”

As an industry, esports is expected to grow 41% in 2017 to nearly $700 million in revenue and to $1.5 billion by 2020, according to video game research company NewZoo. That does not even include gambling, which is estimated to contribute billions more.

Meanwhile, Bitcoin has increased 142% in 2017 to date, and Ether, another cryptocurrency, is now worth25 times more than it was on Jan. 1, trading now at around $210. Ether’s platform allows developers to create their own virtual currencies based off its blockchain, which makes starting a virtual currency easier.

An initial coin offering, or ICO, is an unregulated way for startups to raise funds for a project, selling a percentage of the cryptocurrency to its backers in return. FromMarch to May, the number of ICOs multiplied by six times, TechCrunch reported.

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Growth of Cryptocurrencies Drives Esports Gambling Further – TheStreet.com

In Russia’s Far East, a Fledgling Las Vegas for Asia’s Gamblers … – New York Times

Under Mr. Putin, Moscow has poured billions of dollars into the area, paying for huge bridges, a new university campus and other costly state-directed projects. But despite ever closer relations between Moscow and Beijing, said Artyom Lukin, an international studies professor at the Far East Federal University, Russia has realized that free Chinese money is not coming.

Chinese gamblers are arriving, however, if only because gambling is illegal in their own country, except in Macau on the southern coast near Hong Kong, and because the forest northeast of Vladivostok offers the only accessible casino for the more than 100 million Chinese who live in provinces just across the border from Russia.

Li Yunhui, a 45-year-old businessman and gambler from Mudanjiang, a Chinese city about 150 miles from Vladivostok, said the Russian casino lacked the amenities and service of established gambling centers like Macau, but added: At least it is close. And the air is clean.

He said he had visited Vladivostok regularly since the early 1990s and could not fathom why Russia had lagged so far behind China in building its economy. It feels like a developing country here. This is how China was decades ago, he said. He added that he had tried to set up a small business in Vladivostok but had despaired at all the red tape: What you can do in a day in China takes weeks here.

The gambling venture is itself a showcase of how slowly things gets done. Government officials began pursuing the idea nearly a decade ago. They enlisted a well-connected local businessman, Oleg Drozdov, to build the hotel and casino complex now housing Tigre de Cristal. But Mr. Drozdov was arrested in 2013 on corruption charges after the ouster of the Primorye regions disgraced former governor, Sergey Darkin.

Summit Ascent, the Hong Kong company that now owns 60 percent of the casino venture, took over the concrete shell left by Mr. Drozdovs builders and, after investing $200 million with other investors, finished the construction and opened the casino at the end of 2015. The company, which reported a modest profit for last year, now plans to invest an additional $500 million to build a second luxury hotel, a golf club, extra gambling rooms and other facilities in the same entertainment zone.

Four other casinos planned by other companies, due to be open by now, are far behind schedule. Empty plots of land with scant signs of construction dot the forest. A Russian court recently canceled the casino project of a Russian developer because it was too slow in getting off the ground.

Eric Landheer, Summit Ascents director for corporate finance and strategy in Hong Kong, said that his company had first mover advantage and a monopoly, but that it did not want to be alone in the forest for long because gamblers preferred a more vibrant cluster of casinos.

Gambling has a long and often troubled history in Russia, where attitudes have been shaped by the Orthodox Church, which opposes casinos as the devils work, and by the writings of Fyodor Dostoyevsky, a gambling addict who explored the allure and perils of addiction in his novel The Gambler.

A champion of traditional Christian values, Mr. Putin banned casinos and slot machines in 2009, complaining that too many Russians lose their last penny and pensions through gambling.

Having Chinese and other foreigners lose their money, however, is apparently not a problem. Indeed, their losses now cover the salaries of around 1,000 Russians working for the Tigre de Cristal casino and provide a badly needed source of income for the Primorsky region around Vladivostok, a city that, aside from corruption-addled, state-funded infrastructure projects, has struggled to attract outside investment. Closed to foreigners during the Soviet era, the city now has regular flights to and from Harbin, Beijing and other Chinese cities, and can also be reached by road and train.

To make the fleecing of foreigners and a restricted number of Russians possible, Moscow gave permission for the establishment of four special gambling zones. The westernmost of these, in Kaliningrad, targets gamblers from neighboring Poland, while the others are in the resort town of Sochi and in the Siberian region of Altai.

Russians are also allowed to gamble at the Tigre de Cristal, so long as they show their passports and register. This has not gone down well with Russian priests and those who see casinos as a poor substitute for healthy economic development.

Anyone who has read Dostoyevsky knows all the problems that gambling brings, complained Andrei Kalachinsky, a veteran journalist in Vladivostok. The spread of prostitution will definitely create jobs, but what kind?

Transportation infrastructure has been another problem. A new highway connecting the casino area to the Vladivostok airport turns into a mud track in the final stretch. A winding road to the center of Vladivostok, around 35 miles away, is so clogged with traffic that Yuri Trutnev, Mr. Putins envoy for the Russian Far East, proposed opening a ferry service to speed up the journey to the casino.

The authorities have also been sluggish in delivering on a promise of visa-free entry for visitors from China and other selected countries. Despite the delay, Chinese can still obtain visas relatively easily if they sign up for a tour, and their numbers visiting Vladivostok and the surrounding Primorsky last year more than doubled to around 300,000.

Yuri Kuchin, an opposition member of the Vladivostok City Council, said local bureaucrats usually hindered rather than helped foreign investments, dragging their feet on most issues unless there is a financial benefit for themselves. While a bitter critic of the government, he said he supported the foreign-led casino project as a source of jobs and a good way to squeeze out illegal gambling dens in the area, which he said were often protected by corrupt officials.

The Primorye Development Corporation, the government agency now responsible for the project, declined to say what was being done to combat illegal clubs or explain how the casino project fit into the regions overall development strategy.

A number of foreign projects in Vladivostok have fizzled, including two five-star Hyatt Hotels that were supposed to have opened for business five years ago but are still under construction. Yet the Tigre de Cristal casino, though delayed by various mishaps like the arrest of a local business partner, is now not only up and running, but is making a profit.

Lawrence Ho, Summit Ascents chairman and son of the Macau gambling tycoon Stanley Ho, acknowledged in a report to investors that the year has not been without its challenges but said, Over all, I am very optimistic about the potential of our investment in the jewel of the Russian Far East.

The most lucrative sources of business at the casino are Chinese high-rollers recruited by so-called junket operators, agents who find gamblers, provide credit, make travel arrangements and manage private V.I.P. rooms at the casino. For these services, the casino pays the junket operators a chunk of what it wins from their clients more, Mr. Landheer said, than the 40 percent to 50 percent paid to them in Macau.

All the same, Tommy Li, a junket manager from northeastern China, complained that Vladivostok offered few of the attractions of Macau and was far too cold in winter. Its only real appeal for Chinese gamblers, he said, is its proximity.

One of his main gripes is that there are not enough prostitutes, who he said were far more readily available, and cheaper, in Macau. Mr. Landheer, the corporate finance director, said his company was not in the business of providing prostitutes and would like to see all illegal activities eliminated.

But, he added, there are many other service providers in Vladivostok ready to satisfy all the gamblers needs.

A version of this article appears in print on July 2, 2017, on Page A12 of the New York edition with the headline: In Russias Far East, a Fledgling Las Vegas for Asias Gamblers.

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In Russia’s Far East, a Fledgling Las Vegas for Asia’s Gamblers … – New York Times

Editorial: Gambling not the way to prop up budgets – Bloomington Pantagraph

Consider this data to grasp the impact of gambling locally: $57.6 million was put into video-gaming terminals last year in Bloomington, which collected $730,795 in gaming tax revenue.

The state’s share, minus the winnings paid out, was 25 percent, or about $3.7 million.

That last detail that government gets a cut of the action from every transaction is one of the important things about the explosion of state-licensed video gaming, which Illinois legalized in 2012. It makes gaming an important revenue stream to municipalities at a time of tremendous financial uncertainty in Springfield.

And therein lies the risk. This money cannot be seen as a permanent fix to budget problems.

Yes, people should be able to spend their money however they want. And business owners have every right to make money. However, we cant shake the troublesome feeling that video gaming sites are targeting those who can hardly afford it, and governments are the fiduciary equal of accessories after the fact.

As Bloomington Mayor Tari Renner noted, in response to Bloomington being in the top 10 among video gaming cities, “I want to be in the top 10, but not with that type of distinction.”

None of the venues are very big, since Illinois law limits the number of terminals to five at any one site. Bloomington has 241 terminals at 55 licensed locations. Normal had 58 terminals at 12 locations. Wagers are typically small and, according to state data, payouts are frequent.

But lets be real: These terminals are not benign. Theyre engineered to get you to risk your money. That thousands and thousands of dollars vanish into them instead of “buying local,” supporting local restaurants or paying tuition is disheartening, even if some ends up in municipal coffers.

This puts government officials in a curious Catch-22: With state finances an unmitigated mess, gambling in all forms is a lucrative revenue stream. Last month, a developer announced plans for a Sangamon County casino, although gambling expansion has been a major General Assembly battle. Other legislation would tax fantasy sports betting online. Thats how big a market were talking about.

It all seem a little excessive, doesn’t it?

In Champaign, the city council has extended a temporary moratorium on new video-gaming businesses. Decatur also has pumped the brakes on gaming parlors, capping the number citywide at 30, and requiring new ones to be at least 1,500 feet from another one.

The Normal Town Council last fall passed an ordinance requiring gaming to be at least 200 feet from residences. In 2013, the Bloomington City Council amended the city’s liquor ordinance to prohibit establishments whose primary focus is video gaming.

Thats the reason municipalities must be careful about oversaturation and where gaming is allowed. Five years after the state legalized video gambling, its tempting to see such cash flow as a way to prop up budgets, but we cant operate on the backs of gamblers.

Its a bet we should not be willing to take.

Excerpt from:

Editorial: Gambling not the way to prop up budgets – Bloomington Pantagraph

Exclusive-Okada Sues Family in Bid to Regain Control of Gambling Empire – New York Times

Okada said he hasn’t seen his son Tomohiro in two years and does not know his daughter Hiromi’s current whereabouts. Reuters was unable to reach either of them at addresses in public records. Both are Okada’s children from a previous marriage.

Okada said he hoped a lawsuit would prompt a judge to order them to negotiate a settlement that would restore his position at Okada Holdings.

“Unless I sue there will be no opportunity to talk. The reality is I am in a losing position in terms of voting rights,” Okada said, referring to his 46.4 percent stake in Okada Holdings, versus Tomohiro and Hiromi’s combined 53 percent.

Okada said he did not find out he was dropped as Okada Holdings’ director until May 18. He said Universal’s board told him on May 23 that he was being investigated for alleged misuse of company funds. That was followed by Universal’s announcement on May 31 that he would not be reappointed to its board.

“I was totally blindsided,” Okada said.

The interview took place last Thursday in the restaurant of a Tokyo hotel where Universal was holding its annual shareholders’ meeting. Okada had been denied entry on the grounds he is not a direct shareholder since the Hong Kong holding firm holds his stake.

Universal declined to respond to Okada’s assertions. It said it would make additional disclosures once an internal investigation it recently launched to probe Okada’s alleged improper use of company funds had submitted its findings.

CANNOT FORGIVE

Okada said Tomohiro turned against him because his son believed he was not being paid dividends from Universal commensurate with his 43.5 percent stake in Okada Holdings. Okada said he planned to investigate the matter.

Okada said he was confident he could convince Hiromi to support him as long as he could get her brother to work towards a settlement.

As for his wife Takako, Okada said he could not forgive her for agreeing to be reappointed to Universal’s board. The company said Thursday that Takako would take on responsibility for Okada’s art museum and advise the company on its overseas business.

Takako, 43, did not respond to letters left at her home, an email sent to her company address, or a request to speak relayed through her mother.

Last month, Universal issued a press release accusing Okada and another director of misappropriating some $20 million in company funds in three transactions during 2015. It convened an investigative panel composed of three attorneys that is now looking for other alleged irregularities.

Okada described the companys allegations as “nonsense”. For example, he said one of the transactions in question was a loan not due until November that had been used for a legitimate purpose: to expand junket operations aimed at attracting high-rollers to Universal’s casino in the Philippines.

“That contract is still active. There is no problem.”

Okada said he could not provide a copy of the contract for Reuters to review because it was located at a company office to which he no longer has access.

Okada said he viewed the investigation as an attempt by Universal President Jun Fujimoto to seize control. Okada noted that he had handpicked Fujimoto to help lead the company founded five decades ago.

“I made Fujimoto president. Now he wants to take over.”

Fujimoto called Okada “unfit” to be the director of a public company and vowed to prove that with “irrefutable physical evidence” in a private letter to a shareholder on June 21, Reuters reported last week.

Universal declined to make Fujimoto available for comment. Universal said it was not in a position to comment about Okada’s allegations against Fujimoto. Two new directors at Okada Holdings did not respond to emails seeking comment.

(Additional reporting by William Ho in Hong Kong; Editing by Martin Howell)

Original post:

Exclusive-Okada Sues Family in Bid to Regain Control of Gambling Empire – New York Times

Teenager among 40 nabbed for gambling – The Star Online

Police also seized cash and gambling items as well as handphones and computers.

MIRI: Forty people, including a 14-year-old boy, were nabbed by police in 25 illegal gambling raids in Sarawak.

State CID Chief Senior Asst Comm Datuk Dev Kumar said police had carried out the raids in various parts of the state, including Miri, Sibu, Limbang and small towns like Betong.

The raids are part of the ongoing war against vice in Sarawak, he said.

“A 14-year-old school dropout was among those arrested. He was found dabbling in illegal four-digit gambling,” he said in a statement on Monday.

Read more here:

Teenager among 40 nabbed for gambling – The Star Online

Online gambling conman Robert Gustafsson rises from the dead – CalvinAyre.com

Like a zombie rising from the dead, infamous con artist Jan Robert Gustafsson appears intent on worming his way back into the online gambling industry.

In mid-May, I began hearing industry buzz around a new Manila-based online casino game distributor, QTech Games. The company is headed up by Jonas Alm, who also serves as CEO of software developer Mahjong Logic.

QTechs promotional material indicated that it was offering a large selection of games from familiar industry names such as NetEnt, QuickSpin, Habanero and others, at prices below the industry average.

But shortly after I began contacting some of these companies to inquire about their QTech connection, their names started vanishing from QTechs website. To understand why, it helps to know a little about Gustafssons shady history in the online gambling world.

GUSTOGRAPHY Gustafsson previously headed up the Manila-based Bodog Asia online gambling business until he was sacked for gross incompetence in 2013. A few months later, Gustafsson filed an affidavit with local police that falsely accused his former employer of violating the terms of its Philippine gambling license by accepting wagers from local residents.

Gustafssons lies led to raids on the Bodog Asia offices that failed to find evidence to support Gustafssons claims. The Philippine Court of Appeals ultimately ruled that the raids were illegal and ordered an investigation into the judge who approved the search warrants despite Gustafssons utter lack of evidence.

Gustafssons lies were part of a futile bid to distract from his own growing list of criminal charges in the Philippines. The charges stemmed from a failed conspiracy hatched by Gustafsson and several co-workers to embezzle large sums of money from their former employer, which they planned to use to launch their own online gambling operation.

THE INCREDIBLE SHRINKING CLIENT LIST NetEnt was the first company I contacted regarding QTech Games, as their logo was featured prominently on QTechs website and on its G2E Asia company profile.

NetEnt didnt respond to my inquiry but the NetEnt logo disappeared from the QTech homepage a couple days later. A source close to NetEnt who spoke under promise of anonymity told me that the company had expressed concerns about Gustafssons possible involvement with QTech.

The first company to reply to my emails was Canadas Amaya Gaming (soon to be known as The Stars Group). An Amaya spokesperson said, and I quote: I literally have no idea what youre talking about. What makes you think we have a relationship with these guys?

The spokesman insisted that no one at Amaya was aware of any current or past relationship with QTech, but I pointed out that Amayas logo was the first company listed on the QTech websites list of partners. Mirroring the NetEnt situation, the Amaya logo also disappeared from the QTech homepage the following day.

THREATS AND DENIALS My communications with QTechs partners (knowing or otherwise) prompted CEO Alm to send me a letter via his Swedish legal team, characterizing my inquiries as intentionally malicious behavior and threatening legal action against myself and CalvinAyre.com.

Alm also stated that Gustafsson was not the owner of QTech. When I followed up by asking if Gustafsson had any ownership stake in QTech or its parent company TechAsia Portal Corp., Alm replied that Gustafsson is not, and will never be, a shareholder in either QTech or TechAsia. Alm also said Gustafsson is not, and never will be, an employee of or consultant to either company.

Despite Alms denial, our sources insist that Gustafsson is directly involved in QTech/TechAsia. And theres ample documented evidence of his indirect involvement, as TechAsias certificate of incorporation lists the companys largest shareholder as Swedish national Kim Andreas Bertil Jonson, who just happens to be Gustafssons stepson. Jonson also chairs TechAsias board of directors.

Whats more, Gustafssons daughter-in-law Xin Zhao was originally listed as TechAsias treasurer. Xin recently ceded that role to Dulce Amor C. Vidamo, the former treasurer of Top Trend Gaming, which shared an office with Gustafsson a few years back when he was trying to get a payment processing business off the ground.

WORD TO THE WISE Make no bones about it: Gustafsson has worn out his welcome in the online gambling industry and CalvinAyre.com considers it a public service to track his dealings to ensure companies are aware with whom theyre dealing.

This is even more important for Asian-facing operators now that Philippine regulators are increasing their oversight of the online gambling industry. More than ever, operators need to know that their business relationships arent going to lead to a regulatory smackdown.

Remember: Gustafsson deliberately lied to the police in an attempt to (a) bring down a gaming industry competitor, and (b) save his own skin. While he was unsuccessful on both counts, theres no telling what future dirty tricks he might pull if he feels threatened or sees an advantage to exploit.

And Gustafsson will most definitely be feeling threatened, as his former employer is preparing to file fresh charges against Gustafsson and the other members of his criminal conspiracy as new information regarding their botched caper continues to come to light.

Read the rest here:

Online gambling conman Robert Gustafsson rises from the dead – CalvinAyre.com

NH late to the game in funding treatment for problem gamblers – Concord Monitor

The calls come in when Ed Talbot is counseling clients, driving back to his Madison home or browsing the produce aisle at the grocery store.

The voices on the other end are often anxious, worried, desperate. They want help for loved ones addicted to making bets, at times the callers themselves are the ones in trouble.

Talbot, who turns 75 in August, is one of their only options. The iPhone he carries with him is the states hotline for problem gamblers, which Talbot has manned since its inception two years ago.

You want to strike while the iron is hot, if they make the call you want to be able to respond, said Talbot, executive director of the states nonprofit council on problem gambling. They win the next bet, and its see you later.

Despite being the first state to profit off legalizing the lottery, New Hampshire is one of the last to dedicate a portion of earnings to help treat compulsive gamblers.

Only this year, after Republican Gov. Chris Sununu signs a bill authorizing keno, will a small percentage of the states roughly $77.5 million annual lottery profits be funneled into treatment.

Currently, no public money is earmarked to that purpose and the state has little infrastructure to help the estimated 22,000 residents believed to have gambling problems. Unlike Massachusetts, New Hampshire has never set up a process to certify gambling addiction counselors, Talbot said.

It is very disconcerting, said Keith Whyte, executive director of the National Council on Problem Gambling. The state has an important role to play providing that safety net.

Compulsive gambling can be devastating and lead to bankruptcy, substance abuse, anxiety, depression and even suicide. Talbot knows all of that first hand.

Working at a dog track for more than a decade, Talbot bet on the greyhounds, a habit that slowly escalated into addiction. As he spent more and more time gambling, his home life grew worse. Talbot missed his daughters school functions and went into marriage counseling. On her deathbed in 1976, Talbots mother warned him that if he didnt stop gambling he would lose everything.

The next day she passed away and I spent the next year of my life proving her absolutely right, Talbot recalls. I lost my job, my family, I had no self esteem at all.

Using the last money he had, Talbot made his final bet in 1977. Days later, he showed up to a support group in Massachusetts. It took him the next eight years to pay off all his debts.

Now he wants to help others. A few years ago Talbot, who has had a house in the state for more than two decades, helped launch the New Hampshire Council on Problem Gambling.

I cant tell you how much better my life is, he said. All the things that I saw other people had and they loved and I couldnt understand it, I was so enraptured with gambling. Today I have those things, and I always felt I can help somebody else.

The council operates on a shoestring budget, comprised mainly of an annual $25,000 donation from the Lottery Commission. Two years ago the council submitted to the state a five-year plan to address problem gambling, but theres been no money to fund it, Talbot said.

The keno bill now requires 1 percent of the profits raised go to the states health department to help problem gamblers. Since the funding is tied to kenos popularity, its hard to tell exactly how much money will be raised.

Even then, the dollars arent necessarily a guarantee.

Almost two decades ago lawmakers decided to send 5 percent of state liquor profits into a fund for substance abuse treatment. Lawmakers then raided the fund almost every year afterward to help pay for other government functions. Amid the states ongoing opioid crisis, lawmakers two years ago slashed the funding formula to 1.7 percent. This year they raised it back up to 3.4 percent.

Its not clear how the money meant to treat compulsive gamblers will be used, but it is set to be managed by the states Department for Health and Human Services.

Few services currently exist. The National Council on Problem Gambling lists no counselors in New Hampshire. Three gamblers anonymous groups meet only in the southern tier of the state.

Though the exact number of compulsive gamblers in the state is unknown, there are signs of a problem.

Talbot estimates he gets between six and 12 calls a month. Before his phone number was publicized on the councils website, the Massachusetts helpline usually fielded between 400 and 500 calls a year from New Hampshire residents, Talbot said. Even more were directed to the National Council on Problem Gambling, which contracted with the Louisiana state helpline to cover calls from New Hampshire, according to its website.

Roughly 60 percent of adults in New Hampshire played lottery last year, according to the state Lottery Commission. In its most recent report from 2013, the National Council on Problem Gambling estimates about 2.2 percent of adults in the state had a gambling disorder.

If you think 1 percent is not that much, its a bunch of folks, said Charles McIntyre, executive director of the New Hampshire Lottery. These are problems we want to avoid.

Even though services for problem gamblers may soon become state-funded, Talbot doesnt anticipate he will stop answering the New Hampshires helpline anytime soon.

Right now the most important thing is if somebody calls they need to talk to someone, he said. That window can close.

Read more from the original source:

NH late to the game in funding treatment for problem gamblers – Concord Monitor

Week 1 SEC gambling odds: Alabama favored over FSU; Texas A&M, South Carolina underdogs – SECcountry.com

Were still nearly two months away from the kickoff of the 2017 college football season, but its never too early to start looking ahead to those opening games. The folks in Las Vegas seem to agree, as SEC gambling odds already have been released for Week 1, perBrett McMurphy:

Unsurprisingly, the Alabama Crimson Tide are the headliner for opening weekend, currently marked down as slightly more than a touchdown favorite over the Florida State Seminoles. Alabama typically comes out firing on all cylinders as evidenced by their 52-6 beatdown of eventual Rose Bowl champion USC to open last season. With that said, Nick Saban undoubtedly will remind his team of the last time the Seminoles faced off against a highly ranked SEC squad early in the year, as they mounted an incredible second-half comeback to beat Ole Miss 45-34 last year.

With the Tide leading the way, there are a few other interesting SEC odds: both Texas A&M and South Carolina open as underdogs. The Aggies will have a new quarterback (again) and will be traveling to Pasadena, Calif., to take on the Bruins, so perhaps that line should not come as much of a surprise.

The Gamecocks being nearly a touchdown underdog is somewhat surprising, however, considering the offensive talent they return. Will Muschamp, Jake Bentley and Co.have received a fair amount of buzz this offseason, so pulling off what could technically be considered an upset win could really get the hype train rolling for South Carolina.

NEXT 2017 Fantasy Football: Position rankings, sleepers, bargains, breakouts and potential busts (07/01/2017)

Read the original post:

Week 1 SEC gambling odds: Alabama favored over FSU; Texas A&M, South Carolina underdogs – SECcountry.com

Fade in: Gambling. Corruption. Sin. New Vegas mob exhibit goes to the movies – Los Angeles Times

Las Vegas was once married to the mob, but the relationship unlike the 1988 film was anything but a comedy, a point clearly illustrated by a new exhibit at the Mob Museum.

Mob at the Movies trolls the cinematic archives to reveal how Hollywood portrayed organized crime, including the once-sinister underbelly of Sin City.

The collection includes a suit from the wardrobe department for The Sopranos as well as items from The Godfather, including a poster (in Italian) autographed by various stars. There is also an original script with notes made by the movies special effects coordinator. (Think fake blood, lots of fake blood.)

The Mob Museum

First edition of Mario Puzo’s book, “The Godfather,” plus the movie script and a poster can be seen through Aug. 1.

First edition of Mario Puzo’s book, “The Godfather,” plus the movie script and a poster can be seen through Aug. 1. (The Mob Museum)

Other films in the display are older and more obscure. For example, theres a poster from 1952s The Captive City.

The movie, which starred John Forsythe (his screen debut) and Joan Camden and was directed by Robert Wise, explored the links between gambling and corruption. Interestingly, in a poster, the movie was plugged by Sen. Estes Kefauver (D-Tenn.), who held hearings into organized crime around the country.

One of those 1951 Senate hearings was held in Las Vegas, inside whats now the Mob Museum. The courtroom used by Kefauver has been restored to its midcentury appearance.

The senator actually appeared in The Captive City. Turner Classic Movies website noted that Kefauver spoke of the evils of organized crime in a prologue and again at the end of the film.

Other oft-forgotten movies resurrected for the exhibit include Las Vegas Story starring Jane Russell, Victor Mature and Vincent Price and Las Vegas Shakedown with Dennis OKeefe and Coleen Gray.

Mob at the Movies continues through Aug. 1.

The museum in downtown Las Vegas is open daily from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Advance tickets are $20.95, a savings of $3.

travel@latimes.com

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Continued here:

Fade in: Gambling. Corruption. Sin. New Vegas mob exhibit goes to the movies – Los Angeles Times


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