Casino & Poker Horse Racing

Seven of The Most Audacious Cheaters in Gambling History – And How They Got Caught


Cheating: it happens, and probably more often than we’d like. While most players are totally morally upright and would never attempt to cheat, there’s always some who are. Over the years many people have managed to beat the house and bag huge amounts of cash. But it’s harder than you’d think to get away with doing so, as the various lists of famous cheaters will attest to. Here are just seven of the most impudent cheaters below.

      1. Tommy Glenn Carmichael

        Carmichael is a notorious and (at one time) loathed name in the casino industry. He developed a metal device that, when inserted into the coin slot, would cause the machine to release a payout. He was caught and sentenced to five years in prison. But it would appear that he didn’t learn his lesson, because after his release he developed a similar device known as a monkey paw or slider. This device, when inserted into a slot machine, would trigger the switch that released the coins inside regardless of whether the player won or not. This worked so well that he even sold it on to other players. And then he was caught and imprisoned again. Fool me once…

      2. Josh Field

        Playing using multiple accounts on an online gambling website is something that very few companies will allow, with many going as far as to track IP addresses to prevent users from doing so. However, Field discovered and exploited a glitch in PartyPoker’s security system that allowed a player to create different accounts using multiple browser windows. Utilising this method, he went on to enter various poker tournaments, at one point entering an event as all six players at once. Naturally, he was able to win huge amounts of cash. How was he caught? Through his own stupidity. During one tournament, Field actually bragged to other players about what he was doing. It was almost as though he was trying to get thrown out – and that’s exactly what ended up happening.

      3. Ron Harris

        Harris worked as a technician in various gambling establishments, ensuring that slot machines were fitted with approved computer chips. Sadly, temptation proved to be irresistible for Mr Harris, who decided to use his experience tinkering with slot machines to replicate a random number generator identical to the sort used in casinos. Using this machine to predict the outcome of various games, he pushed his luck a little too far and was discovered when he bagged thousands of pounds in one go. Unsurprisingly, he lost his job.

      4. Stephen Wiles and Ken Richardson

        In Leicester Racecourse in 1982, horse trainer Stephen Wiles devised a scam with his horse’s owner, Ken Richardson. On the day of the race they swapped their gelding Flockton Grey with another horse by the name of Good Hand, (a process commonly known as using a ringer) and placed a number of bets with different bookmakers on his success. Being a full year older than the horse he replaced, Good Hand went on to win an astonishing victory over his competitors. Here’s where the plan fell apart – the margin of victory was so great that bookmakers refused to pay out without an inquiry. From there it was a simple matter for inspectors to verify that Good Hand was too old to be the right horse. If only Wiles and Richardson had exercised a little restraint, they might have got away with it.

      5. Monique Laurent

        Laurent was the ringleader of a large network of friends and family who pulled off a gutsy trick on a game of roulette. Using a radio transmitter concealed within a cigarette case that affected the motion of a rigged ball, Laurent and her accomplices managed to walk away with millions. How did she get the rigged ball into the launcher? Her brother was the croupier. Frustrated casino owners had the table checked over by technicians and even had her brother investigated to determine whether he was incompetent at his job, all to no result. Ironically, Laurent was only caught out due to one of the casino owners taking note of her beauty – intrigued at why such a beautiful woman would come in to sit alone at a table, he tried to chat her up only to be repeatedly rebuffed, and eventually put two and two together. All he had to do was ask her for a cigarette and the jig was up.

      6. Dennis Nikrasch

        Similarly to Ron Harris, Nikrasch figured out that if the machinery inside slot machines could be manipulated, he would be able to make huge sums of money. A locksmith by trade, Nikrasch was able to quickly open any lock by expertly replicating their keys. He used this skill to quickly open slot machines and insert his own modified computer chips inside them which would cause the machine to hit the jackpot more often. He was eventually arrested after an accomplice, angry that Nikrasch had not granted her a bigger share of the profits, tipped off the FBI about his scheme. In today’s shocking news, it turns out thieves are often quite stingy.

      7. Jean-Paul Pasqualini and Cedric Rossi

        In 2009 two French poker players, Jean-Paul Pasqualini and Cedric Rossi, competed in the Partouche Poker Tour and won 1st and 2nd However, an enquiry took place after it was alleged that they had cheated, using subtle hand signals to communicate what cards each held to the other. This gave them an edge over the other players and allowed them to win millions of dollars each. Both men were suspended from playing again. You can watch the footage yourself online – see if you can try and spot the hand signing.