Renowned Pennsylvanian gambling operator, SugarHouse Casino has recently been slapped with a $30,000 fine for violating state gaming laws in two separate occasions in 2017. During these incidents, the employees were found to have allowed customers to play unapproved poker games – this happened to include a 10-card stud game between two popular poker personalities that was even captured on YouTube.
The state gaming control board announced that it had assessed the fine and found that the poker games in question had not been previously approved in the Keystone State. In one of the instances that prompted the issuance of the fine, at the end of a poker tournament in SugarHouse Casino, two of the contestants that the operator referred to as ” celebrity players” reportedly convinced a dealer at the venue to deal 10 cards to each player for a showdown bet of $42,000.
Doug Polk, who went on to win the unapproved game was the one who went on to post the video on YouTube. Jeremy Kaufman, Polk’s opponent, was however set to win but he opted to negotiate an early surrender on the hand for $25,000. SugarHouse Casino responded to the violation by taking disciplinary action on the dealer as well three supervisors, two of whom later resigned.
The second event that attracted the fine involved unauthorized play of Open Face Chinese Poker where each of the players was dealt 13 cards. Reportedly, five hands were dealt between two players with a total of $600 being wagered, that is, before one of the supervisors learned of the games and halted it.
SugarHouse was not the only that faced the PGCB wrath though – the gaming control board also issued a $7,500 fine against Global Innovative Gaming, LLC for failing to immediately notify the board of a change in ownership.
More Troubles for the State
Disciplinary actions aside, the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board has been hard at work trying to ensure the progress of the states gaming industry. However, there are some complications that have cropped up since the beginning of 2019 with the most notable one being the reversal of the Wire Act opinion by the United States Department of Justice.
The state’s online gaming industry was expected to go live in the course of the year but now the murkiness of the situation, a cloud of uncertainty has been cast over any plans. Even so, it is certainly too early to tell how everything will play out especially considering the fact that the Wire Act opinion is already being challenged at the courts.