Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Bill Mason, along with the Ohio Attorney General's Office and the Ohio Casino Control Commission, announced the indictments of seven defendants who have each been charged with one count of gambling, a felony of the fifth degree.
The following individuals were found cheating at the Horseshoe Casino between the dates of May 22, 2012, and June 17, 2012: Nidal Abuaun, 49, of Lakewood, Nathaniel Emory, 40, of Cleveland, Russell Heidenreich, 46, of Cleveland, Aaron Higdon, 29, of Cleveland, Philip Koch, 54, of Lakewood, Theodore Shepherd, 53, of Cleveland, and Louis Wilkerson, 30, of Akron.
The defendants were each caught cheating on various casino games such as Black Jack, Texas Hold'Em, Roulette and Craps by either past posting, making a bet after the time allowed, capping/stacking a bet, adding chips to a bet after a good outcome is predictable, or removing bets on losing hands/rolls.
Prosecutor Mason said, "Ohio now has statutes in place to address crimes committed in the new casinos. My office will continue to prosecute these crimes as we would any other crime in our County."
"From the very beginning we warned the would-be cheaters that our gaming agents, working under the Casino Control Commission, were all highly trained to spot casino crooks," said Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine. "These indictments show that if someone comes into one of Ohio's casinos planning to cheat, they should think twice."
"The integrity of casino gaming is critical to the State of Ohio; with these indictments, the Ohio Casino Control Commission is sending a strong message that cheating or stealing from a casino violates Ohio law. Stealing from a casino is the same as stealing from the State of Ohio and will not be tolerated," said the Ohio Casino Control Commission Director of Enforcement, Karen Huey. "Our gaming enforcement agents are well-trained and working 24-7 to fight gaming crime. Working with Prosecutor Bill Mason, we support prosecuting gaming criminals to the fullest extent of the law."