Top Crimes People are Charged with in New Jersey Casinos

Leading Reasons for Arrests at Casinos in Atlantic City NJ

Best NJ Casino Crime Defense People from near and far come to Atlantic City to enjoy the casinos and high-intensity gambling, drinking, and entertainment. Neighboring towns and states motor into vacation for the nightlife and excitement, but so do travelers from across the nation and overseas. Atlantic City is a popular East Coast gambling destination, where casinos like Tropicana, Caesars, Harrah’s, and Hard Rock Hotel and Casino are notorious to locals and strangers alike. However, vacation plans at Borgata or Ocean and other casinos may go differently. A night of fun can end in a jail cell.

Frequent Casino Criminal Charges in New Jersey

Atlantic City’s crime rate is far higher than the national average, and casinos represent a fair share of arrests for various offenses. Theft and fraud crimes top the list, but there are many others that get people arrested as well, from fighting in the casino to drunk driving on your way home or back to your hotel.

Casino Cheating Charges in Atlantic City

Swindling occurs when gamblers or dealers defraud the casinos for money by cheating or misrepresenting. Posting a bet after the dealer closed betting for the table is a form of swindling called past post betting. It also includes shifting craps table chips after the dice throw or moving chips after a blackjack table deal of the cards. Swindling is considered cheating, and players and dealers can cheat in a casino.

Fraud in card games consists of marking cards so the player can track them by bending a corner or using another method of identifying the card. Card cheating offenses also include buying card decks and using valuable cards at a card table to gain an advantage. However, many casinos sell decks with cards punched or otherwise identifiable as cards from outside the casino tables. Casino dealers can also mark decks to cheat in favor of the dealer.

Another common offense is stealing chips. A player squeezes into a busy craps table and places their chips next to another player’s “accidentally” mingling their chips with the other player’s, hoping they don’t know how many chips they had. Aside from stealing chips, players come to the table with fake chips. For example, an individual may have a stack of low-value chips, like a dollar chip, and paint over the number, making it a $100.00 chip. Patrons also use fake coins in slot and poker machines.

Non-payment of markers is another way to get arrested. A casino may offer lines of credit to players so that they continue to gamble. Although these loans are interest-free and readily available to qualifying applicants, they are expected to be repaid within 30 days. When the patron defaults on payment, the casino can go after them, using the courts to issue a warrant for arrest.

Also, while counting cards at the gaming table is not illegal, it is when a player uses a device. Using an electronic device to count cards to gain an advantage at Blackjack or any other card game is cheating and cause for arrest. Likewise, tilting the game in one’s favor with loaded dice is illegal, which could land a person in jail when caught.

Caught Stealing at a Casino in NJ

Stealing chips is not the only theft occurring in casinos. Where cash flows freely, it is not unusual for patrons to have their pockets picked or face a robbery while finding their way to their car in the parking lot. Others steal vouchers and cash them in. However, the abundance of security cameras and personnel makes theft of any kind risky, including credit card theft crimes.

Underage Gambling Charges in NJ Casinos

Although Atlantic City is a common vacation destination for family vacations, casinos are not places for minors. Parents can only bring minors to a casino if they are merely walking through and not stopping to play. It is illegal for anyone under 21 to loiter in a casino and for anyone under 21 to gamble in one. If caught, the penalty is a potential six months in jail and $1,000.00 fine for a disorderly persons offense.

Alcohol-Related Casino Offenses in New Jersey

Alcohol and gambling often go together, and some casinos offer free or discounted alcoholic beverages. However, gambling and drinking can lead to arrests for disruptive behavior and a DWI driving away from the casino. It is a petty disorderly persons offense to engage in loud and threatening verbal or physical disputes in a casino. Disorderly conduct convictions can result in a $500.00 fine and 30 days in jail. On the other hand, a DUI can lead to expensive fines, fees, surcharges and driving restrictions.

Arrested for Assault at a Casino in NJ

Should a physical fight erupt in the casino, assault can get someone arrested and jailed. Even minor assaults can lead to an arrest. Simple assault is a disorderly persons offense. When someone suffers severe bodily injury, the penalty rises significantly, including up to ten years in prison depending on the situation. Aggravated assault may be a second degree, third degree, or fourth degree criminal offense, depending on the circumstances.

Drug Charges at NJ Casinos

Drug possession charges result when an individual brings illegal drugs into a casino. The penalties for possessing an illicit controlled dangerous substance or unauthorized prescription drugs depend on the type of drug and the number of drug units in possession. Drug possession and drug paraphernalia that go with drugs, like pipes or rolling papers, can trump up the charges with consequential fines and prison terms.

Accused of Trespassing at a Casino in New Jersey

When casino security asks a person to leave, and they do not or return after being kicked out, they face conviction for trespassing. Depending on the situation, trespassing may be a disorderly persons offense or a fourth degree indictable crime. The latter means up to 18 months in prison and a $10,000.00 fine.

Charged with a Gun in a Casino in NJ

Weapons offenses arise when someone brings a handgun into a casino without a valid permit. In New Jersey, handguns require permits for purchase and carrying a gun outside of one’s home or business premises. Out-of-state permits are not valid in New Jersey. Gun charges for carrying a firearm into a casino – even with an NJ-issued permit, can lead to arrest, as a casino is considered a prohibited sensitive place under the law. Also, possessing a firearm without a proper permit could result in years in prison since the Graves Act requires those convicted to serve a mandatory minimum sentence before eligibility for parole release.

Arrested in Atlantic City, Where will my Case be Handled?

Many theft and fraud crimes are indictable offenses, meaning an indictment and a jury trial occur in the Atlantic County Superior Court. However, lesser offenses, such as disorderly persons and petty disorderly persons offenses are matters for the Atlantic City Municipal Court. A municipal court judge conducts a trial and decides guilt or acquittal for lesser offenses.

Talk to an Atlantic City NJ Casino Crimes Defense Lawyer Today

If you are arrested for a casino crime in New Jersey, contact an aggressive criminal defense attorney at The Tormey Law Firm to assist you in tearing down a prosecutor’s case against you. On behalf of all of the clients we represent, we fight tooth and nail for a dismissal of the charges or a not-guilty verdict at a trial as the first and best option. When a not-guilty verdict is unlikely, we work toward alternatives that keep our clients out of jail and conviction-free if possible.

For instance, diversionary programs that allow first-time offenders a chance to avoid incarceration are available in Superior and Municipal courts. Such programs will enable you to serve your time outside of jail or prison by participating in a supervised probationary program and performing community service hours. Our criminal defense lawyers can advise you on submitting a successful application to a diversionary program like Pre-Trial Intervention (PTI) to stay out of prison and maintain a clean criminal record.

In many situations, you need to consider the severe punishment for the charges and the cumulative incarceration years you would spend without an attorney to help you bargain for a downgrade of the charges and a shorter sentence. Then, pleading guilty to a lesser offense and reduced penalties may be the optimal outcome. No matter what, it is invaluable to have an experienced New Jersey casino crime defense lawyer on your side to handle the charges. Call (201)-556-1570 for a free consultation with an attorney on our criminal defense team regarding your casino criminal charges.


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Learn More About How to Fight Your Charges

If you've been charged with a criminal offense, disorderly persons offense, or traffic / DWI violation, you have the right to an attorney who will defend you against your charges and fight for your best interests. To learn more about how your attorney can fight to have your charges dismissed or reduced, click a link below to see our video library of legal defenses and strategies.

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