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Quick Fact – Excluded Persons

Quick Fact – Excluded Persons

1975-1976 Nevada’s infamous “Black Book,” which contains information about the unsavory individuals who are banned from casinos, still exists today but under a different moniker. In 1975, citizen Beni Casselle expressed to the state gaming commission’s chairman “dissatisfaction with the negative connotation inherent thru the constant usage of the catchy-phrase Nevada black book, especially as […]

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Mobster Meyer Lansky Tries to Desert USA

Mobster Meyer Lansky Tries to Desert USA

1970-1972 Meyer Lansky was the puppeteer behind the scenes of the world’s gambling stage from the 1930s to the 1960s, controlling and manipulating the characters with aplomb. The show’s plot was him capitalizing on his brilliant financial acumen and reputation as a former enforcer for the Mafia to develop and skim from a casino empire — encompassing Las Vegas (the Sahara, Sands, Thunderbird, Horseshoe, Flamingo and El Cortez), New Orleans, Miami and Havana — that generated obscene amounts of money. At the height of his success in this endeavor, the 1950s, this Eastern Europe-born immigrant, né Maier Suchowljansky, was worth an estimated $20 million ($182 million today). New Home Sought At age 68, Lansky and his second wife Thelma moved from Miami Beach, Florida to Israel in October 1970 and four months later, applied for citizenship, as the mobster wanted to live his remaining days there. It’s unknown if the reason was his Zionist beliefs or desire to distance himself from potential future criminal charges in the United States. Perhaps it was a bit of both. “I don’t want to make money here,” Lansky told the Haaretz newspaper. “I am Jewish and I want to live here.” Then, under its Law […]

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Quick Fact – Casino Credit Component

Quick Fact – Casino Credit Component

1970s Caesars Palace in Las Vegas extended $160 million in credit to players in 1977. This was more than the then-considered staggering $106 million cost of the original MGM Grand (early ’70s), also in Sin City, and equals roughly $641 million today. Offering credit to players who were deemed able to repay it was a common practice among Nevada casinos, and these IOUs, or markers, collectively could add up to great sums. In the 1970s the major casinos on the Las Vegas Strip had as much as $30 million in outstanding credit on their books ($135.5 million today) at any given time; for smaller off-Strip casinos, the figure was closer to $1 million ($4.5 million today).

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