A federal grand jury has indicted three former employees of the Palms in Las Vegas for an alleged betting scheme authorities say defrauded the resort out of more than $800,000.
Michael Albanese, Matthew Kidle and Kassie Baker are each charged with conspiracy to commit wire fraud, a felony. Palms bettor Charles Pecchio faces the same charge.
Nevada Gaming Control Board enforcement chief Jerry Markling says the Palms cooperated in the investigation.
The Las Vegas Review-Journal reports the four are accused of placing or allowing invalid bets on quinella wagers, or bets on which horses place first and second in a race, in 2006 and 2007.
Albanese has pleaded not guilty. His attorney did not return calls Thursday. The other three had yet to be taken into custody.
Internet poker gets OK from regulators
Nevada gambling regulators have approved three companies’ plans to participate in Internet poker sites accessible only within state boundaries, although the sites themselves have a few hurdles to clear.
The Nevada Gaming Commission on Thursday approved South Point Poker LLC for the state’s first interactive gambling operator’s license. Reno-based Monarch Interactive Inc. was also licensed as an operator.
The Las Vegas Sun reports Global Cash Access Holdings, Inc., was licensed to provide online payment services.
South Point lawyer Steve Harris says the company’s technology still needs to pass through several layers of inspection, but says site operators hope to be accepting real-money bets by October.
The South Point launched a free-play online poker site last year that doesn’t handle real money.
Terminal 3 at McCarran gets two new tenants
Two new airlines are shifting to a new terminal in Las Vegas’ McCarran International Airport.
United Airlines and Hawaiian Airlines moved last week to the newly opened Terminal 3.
The companies join Alaska Airlines, Frontier Airlines, JetBlue Airways, Sun Country Airlines and Virgin America in the $2.4 billion terminal that opened at the end of June. The space also services foreign airlines.
McCarran officials say shifting more domestic airlines to the new site will ease congestion in the older Terminal 1.
Officials have installed electronic signs over roadways leading into the airport to guide drivers to the proper terminal.
Grand Sierra to unveil renovations
Officials for the Grand Sierra Resort and Casino in Reno say they’re hoping to lure more locals with $25 million in renovations.
Northern Nevada’s largest hotel-casino is planning a “Grand Celebration” this weekend to show off white marble flooring, new and upgraded restaurants, numerous chandeliers and updated wall coverings.
Bill Eadington of the University of Nevada, Reno’s Institute for the Study of Gambling and Commercial Gaming says the Grand Sierra is inherently a tourist hotel because of its size. The challenge will be convincing locals that they should visit, too.
The property has struggled in recent years and seen seven different owners since it opened as the MGM Grand-Reno in 1978. It was purchased by the California-based Meruelo Group last spring.