On October 1st, 2013

World Famous Gambler Caught Cheating DOJ agents lead multi-agency investigation

ASA-DOJArchie Karas, 62, best-known for a winning card playing gambling  streak from 1992 to 1995 when he turned just $50 into $40 million, was taken into custody September 24, 2013 at his home in Las Vegas, according to  the San Diego County District Attorney's Office. 

The world famous gambler was caught marking cards at the Barona Casino blackjack table in San Diego in July and now faces charges of burglary, winning by fraudulent means and cheating.  The Barona Gaming Commission referred the case to the California Department of Justice (DOJ) Bureau of Gambling Control.   The Bureau then coordinated a multi-agency investigation that allowed agents  to identify Karas as the person marking cards.  The San Diego County District Attorney’s Office assisted with the arrest and search warrants and will coordinate the extradition.

"It's believed this high roller cheated the casino out of more than $8,000," said Alan Barcelona, president of the California Statewide Law Enforcement Association (CSLEA).  CSLEA represents nearly 7,000 law enforcement, public safety and consumer protection professionals who work for the State of California, including DOJ special agents.  "Agents dealt him a new deck of cards that includes the possibility of years in prison."

According to the San Diego District Attorney's Office,  Karas was caught on surveillance cameras marking cards to secretly identify the value of each card he was dealt.   Karas has won millions of dollars gambling and has been the subject of several investigations.  He is considered by many to have been the greatest gambler of all time and has often been compared to Nick the Greek, another high stakes gambler. Karas himself claims to have gambled with more money than anyone else in history.

Karas is currently being held in Las Vegas on no bail. An extradition hearing is scheduled in Nevada on Monday, September 30. If convicted of all the charges, Karas faces up to 3 years in prison.

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