Interesting article by John L. Smith, investigative reporter/columnist with the LVRJ and well known author of gambling related material (see: Running Scared about Steve Wynn).
Smith makes some good points in his article but as I have said before, Cantor Gaming (or CG) and Lee Amaitis should get through this alright assuming the Gaming Commission approves the GCB’s recommendations and accepts the massive fine levied.
Amaitis is a very sharp guy and while he may have boasted about being close to Billy Walters, I personally don’t see that as such a bad thing. Walters is a professional gambler and Amaitis is in the business of operating sports books. People that earn great sums of money from gambling will always be scrutinized by the authorities, and knowing these folks or even being close to them is not a crime. Walters happens to be a nice guy from what I have heard and he is a well known philanthropist in Nevada.
Las Vegas is full of colorful characters and while the old (read: MOB) days are long gone, there are plenty of people with “interesting” backgrounds that are friendly with licensed gaming people. As long as these “interesting characters” are not involved in casino operations or are not bringing the administration and oversight of licensed gaming into disrepute (by their association with licensed persons), what’s the real harm?
Let’s face it, monks and saints are not the people that frequent Las Vegas and sports betting in particular is not the realm of little old church ladies. Call a spade a spade.
The GCB does a great job policing the sports wagering business which legally handles approximately 3.5 Billion dollars in Nevada. Unfortunately the GCB does not police the approximately 400-500 Billion that is illegally wagered in the US each year, but this betting does happen and most of these folks are not unsavory. Many of these “illegal bettors” are normal law abiding citizens who just like to wager and can’t fly down to Vegas to place a legal bet.
All I am saying is that if you hang around a barbershop long enough you will get a haircut. The sports wagering industry is what it is. Not good. Not bad. Just there.