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People who lost it all: Abysmal Gambling Losses

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Unless you live on a cloud, you know that betting on anything implies a risk and that the higher the risk, the higher the rewards. And I am not going to lie, losing money in a casino sucks big time. But the feeling of defeat is somewhat diminished by the knowledge that it could happen. I mean, when you gamble, you know that losing is a possibility and a constant at casinos.

This is exactly the reason why I try to be wise with my gambling. I consider my chances and take into account the wagering limits in order to manage and not burn out my bankroll in one sitting. Simple, right? Maybe it is when you are a regular Joe like me, who live casinos do not bother with. But, what if you were a high roller and were surrounded by incredibly perks and a full casino staff literally bending over your every need and whim/ will you be able to stop then? These three guys did not and they ended up making history, in the worst way possible.

1. Businessman Mark Johnston’s drunken $500,000 blunder


When real estate businessman Mark Johnston woke up in Vegas from his Super Bowl weekend binger, he did not just feel a heavy hangover, he also felt quite lighter, like half a million dollars lighter. Ok, maybe not but that is how he should have feel after losing that amount in Downtown Grand Casino the night before. And now, he is suing the casino that he played in on the basis of intoxication and negligence. According to Johnson, he should not have to play the money because he played while being intoxicated. He is blaming the casino for continuing to serve him comped drinks while he wasted away hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Johnson main claim is that he “couldn’t even see the cards” and that “I[i]f you’re intoxicated, you’re not allowed to gamble. They’re supposed to stop you.” And he is kind of right. As most of us know, the state of Nevada has made it illegal for casinos to host intoxicated clients from playing at their tables. However, Johnston will have to prove that he was truly inoperative if he wants to win the lawsuit. As of right now, the case is still under litigation, so we will have to wait for the results.

2. An $870,000 Glitch


A pet shop worker form Naples, Italy had a rude awakening from his gambling dreams when he was informed that the £650,000 he had won on the gambling site Eurobet were nothing more than the result of a computer virus that had filtered to the website.

47 year old Bruno Venturi could not believe it when he managed to turn £17 into a considerable fortune while playing the lottery-style game “Sixty Seconds”. He had been playing with the company for the past two years, wining only small sums of money. However, the company is refusing to pay for his winnings on the account of a computer bug that only charged him for 1 out of the 6 bets he made to get that juicy sum.

Bruno sued the website since he argues that he never realized that there was any error and that the reason he stopped his lucky streak was because “I realized the amount that I was winning and I realized that I had to stop. I had been lucky enough…I am only human.” Unfortunately, since Mr. Venturi did not paid for the bets, the judge ruled in favor of the casino. This really breaks my heart because I always root for the little guy! I really hope that Mr. Venturi catches another big break!

3. A Whale that Sank


Ouch, just ouch. That was all I could said at first when I heard of Terry Watanabe and his $127 million loss in 2007. I mean, how does one even lose that much money? Turns out it is easier than you think, as long as you have a gambling problem and a multimillion dollar company.

Watanabe, the CEO of the Oriental Trading Company, loss this massive amount of money while playing at two casinos belonging to Harrah’s Entertainment Inc in Las Vegas. As ridiculous as it sounds, Watanabe alone was solely in charge of bringing 5.6% of the company’s revenue that year. According to casino staff, at his peak, he was losing an average of $5 million a day. Watanabe tried to sue the casino but his intent backfired in. In fact, the Clark County District Attorney’s office ended up suing Watanabe in 2009 with four felony counts of theft and intent to defraud Harrah’s out of $14.7 million. At the end, Watanabe and the casino settled their differences outside of the courtroom. Thankfully, he is now receiving professional counseling for his gambling addiction.

Sometimes, the line between moral correctness and client influence can blur, especially when dealing with these high rollers. Live casinos can be tricky but I do think it unfair to sue a casino because you lost, unless there’s actual proof that they wrongfully manipulate you to spend large sums of money taking advantage of your addiction or state of sobriety. And this is almost never the case. Thankfully, you can play at ease in Prism Casino with a secure and trusted software from the privacy of your house.

Gemma Sykes

Gemma is not only a great game player who enjoys casino halls, she is also a great jazz dancer. She has a very keen interest in the way things work, her curiosity got her a job on online gambling industry as a writer. Always looking for new and fun ways to do things and still have time for the spotlight.