Casino Crime Roundup: Online Blackjack Scam Leads to Shuffler’s Arrest

An online card shuffler was arrested this week for allegedly defrauding Evolution Gaming in a $47K blackjack scam on the DraftKings platform.

DraftKings app on phone
The DraftKings app on a phone, pictured above. Evolution Gaming hosts online casino games on the DraftKings platform. A company online shuffler was arrested for an alleged blackjack scam. (Image: Connecticut Post)

The suspect, Sebastian Echeverri, 23, of Norwalk, Conn., used three personal accounts to place bets on card decks he had memorized or manipulated, according to the Connecticut Post newspaper.

He is suspected of tampering with cards during “at least 26 different games,” Patch reported.

Echeverri surrendered to State Police on Wednesday and reportedly admitted to the allegations. He was charged with first-degree larceny and cheating.

He was released after posting a $50K bond and is scheduled to appear in Bridgeport Superior Court on April 20.

Echeverri worked for Evolution Gaming, which hosts online casino games on the DraftKings and FanDuel platforms, State Police said. The scheme came to light last year after one of Echevarri’s DraftKings accounts appeared suspicious.

Company officials saw the account was accessed from “the same device used by Echevarri to log into Evolution’s employee portals and view information, such as his work schedule or time sheets,” State Police said. The amounts involved in the games were also “abnormally high,” State Police added.

Video footage also showed Echeverri “actively examining the sequence of the cards on which he would subsequently place bets,” State Police said.

Company Fined for Self-Exclusion List Error

Penn Entertainment was recently fined $45K by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) after it was revealed its Hollywood Casino at Penn National Racecourse allowed people on a self-exclusion list to place online bets.

Five players on the list wagered on the casino’s online Barstool Sportsbook, according to the PGCB.

Online gaming sites can’t allow betting from those who put their names on the iGaming Self-Exclusion List.

Felon Arrested for Bringing Gun to Casino

Gary D. Danielson, 32, of Coos Bay, Ore., was arrested Wednesday after he was seen with a firearm while walking to the entrance of Oregon’s Mill Casino, authorities said.

Danielson allegedly covered his face with a mask before grabbing a handgun from his pocket and placing it inside his jacket, Oregon TV station KPIC reported.

The man’s suspicious behavior was spotted by officials from the Coos County Sheriff’s Office who were attending a routine meeting at the casino at the time. When deputies stopped the man, they found a 9 mm handgun, according to KPIC.

Danielson was charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm and was booked at the Coos County Jail.

Girl Left Alone in Car at Philadelphia Casino

A little girl was found by herself in a locked car outside of Live! Casino & Hotel Philadelphia on Wednesday night.

The girl wasn’t injured. An unnamed man who had left the girl in the Volkswagen was charged, according to Philadelphia TV station WCAU.

It was unclear how long the child was in the car. Nor was it known whether the man was a parent, or just taking care of the child.

Alleged Fentanyl Dealer Arrested

Shamar Turner of Detroit, Mich., was arrested Tuesday after a tribal police drug raid on his room at North Dakota’s Sky Dancer Casino & Resort.

Inside his room were hundreds of fentanyl pills, suspected marijuana, drug paraphernalia, and $1,870 in cash, authorities said.

The investigation revealed that Turner went to the casino last Thursday from Detroit to sell fentanyl at the tribal community.

Turner was charged with possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver, possession of a controlled substance, and possession of drug paraphernalia.

The court-approved search was undertaken by the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa Indian Drug Taskforce and other officials.

Man Arrested for Allegedly Stealing

Edward Butler, 45, of Pensacola, Fla. was arrested Tuesday in connection with the armed robbery of a casino winner in December on a highway in Walnut Hill, Fla.

On December 27, Butler was driving on Highway 97 when he allegedly crashed into a car in front of him. Butler then walked up to the car, opened a passenger door, and pointed a gun at the elderly man inside.

He threatened to kill the victim if he didn’t hand over his money, police said. After seeing the gun, the victim tried to pull out his own firearm, but Butler was able to wrestle it away from him.

Butler allegedly grabbed the man’s leg and pulled up his boot. Inside was $8,000 he won that day at an Atmore, Fla. casino. Butler stole the money and a credit card before he drove away with a second suspect, police said. Butler used the credit card to withdraw $600, likely from an ATM, later that same night.

Butler was apprehended and charged with battery, aggravated assault (victim over 65), larceny, grand theft of a firearm, robbery with a firearm, and fraud, according to Florida TV station WEAR. He was booked at the Escambia County Jail and bail was set at $117,500.

He remained in jail as of Friday.

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