Two Atlantic City casinos have been fined for allowing two patrons to play the slot machines or table games even though they are on a list of banned gamblers.
The state Division of Gaming Enforcement said Tuesday the penalties against Tropicana Casino and Resort and Resorts Casino Hotel underscore the seriousness of the state’s “self-exclusion” program. Tropicana was fined $45,075, while Resorts was hit with a $17,500 penalty.
“We take our responsibility very seriously when it comes to addressing compulsive gambling through the self-exclusion program,” said David Rebuck, the division director and New Jersey’s top casino regulator. “The cooperation between the division and the industry is paramount in identifying and addressing the problems of compulsive gambling.”
Now in its 12th year, the self-exclusion program is designed to help people avoid the pitfalls of compulsive gambling. When gamblers volunteer for the program, they are given the choice of being barred from casinos for one year, five years or a lifetime. Casinos are supposed to have safeguards in place to prevent those people from gambling.
In Tropicana’s case, a self-excluded gambler, publicly identified only as “DA,” was allowed to play blackjack April 2 and May 19 of last year, according to a division complaint.
Further, Tropicana failed to check the gambler’s identification when the patron obtained two cash advances. In addition, Tropicana failed to confiscate the patron’s gambling chips after it was belatedly discovered the person was on the self-exclusion list, the division’s complaint said.
At Resorts, a self-excluded gambler, publicly identified as “JM,” played the slot machines and table games over a 12-hour period June 7-8 of last year. Resorts failed to verify the person’s identity when the patron obtained a cash advance one time, the division said.
Tropicana and Resorts declined requests for comment Tuesday. The division said both casinos accepted the fines and have added new safeguards to prevent self-excluded patrons from gambling.
In Tropicana’s case, the security staff and cash-cage personnel involved in the incident were disciplined, the division said.
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