American Roulette: Interview with International Casino Cheat Richard Marcus

The true story of a 25-year run ripping-off the world's casinos

Posted by Chuckmonster

VT: The latest casino 'craze' is 'Craps Sharpshooting' where one trains setting and tossing dice to be able to roll a predetermined number with a frightening degree of accuracy. As a man who has perfected physical maneuvers, slight of hand and distraction techniques and used them repeatedly in real casino environments, do you think that this technique is physically possible?

RM: Craps sharpshooting is a big zero. The jagged back wall protects against all illegitimate tosses and if you don't hit the back wall the pit boss will tell you to - or get out of Dodge. I do not believe anyone can hit the back wall and control the outcome of the dice.

VT: You waited until the last page to mention that you don't intend 'American Roulette' to be a 'how-to guide' for casino cheaters, which, to some degree it is. Why bother with the disclaimer?

RM: For one, I don't want armies of casino cheaters out there on my account. Second, I gotta protect myself from being accused of promoting exactly that.

VT: Benny Binion's offered Joe and Henry Classon a payoff to stay out of his casino. He said that if they ever needed money to stop by the casino cage and ask the cashier to contact him and he'd pay it out... as long as they promised to take the cheat moves somewhere else. If other casino operators offered similar armistice's would you have quit the biz and taken the loot, or was the rush a bigger payoff than the money itself?

RM: Your question is too hypothetical. Benny Binion was a real maverick and he knew better than his peers how to cheat gamblers and even cheaters. No other casino owner from his day or today would ever make that offer to a casino cheater. I was not around when he did make his offer to Joe and Henry Classon, but looking at the situation hypothetically, I would probably take a casino operator's offer of money to stay out of his casino. This because it's an offer too classy to refuse.

VT: Do you still keep in contact with any of the members of your teams? Do any of them still work in the cheating business? Have any of them read 'American Roulette'?

RM: I still keep in contact with Joe Classon, Pat Mallery and Balls. They all read the book and loved it. Pat and Balls are still quite active, which further answers your question about the moves being more difficult nowadays. they're not.

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Comments & Discussion

Breaking Vegas w/ Richard Marcus was amazing - great true story and ingenuity!

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