Guns n Roses Ready to Take Over Sin City

October 31st, 2012

Las Vegas fans of Guns n Roses are getting ready for a 12 show marathon of the ‘Appetite for Democracy’, starting on Halloween.  The hard rock band will take over the Joint inside the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino for a number of shows through November 24, and despite all belief to the contrary, Axl Rose promises to be on time and ready for a good show.

The shows are expected to be a highlights reel of some of the band’s most mind-blowing songs.  The tour itself gets its name from the initial album Appetite for Destruction, and the band’s latest release Chinese Democracy.  Rose himself spent many years in Vegas during the time he disappeared from the public eye, although he admits he wasn’t much of a gambler during those years.

“I spent a lot of time in Vegas and didn’t get bothered. I wasn’t gambling or partying at the time. I’d go walking at night, just watching people. I was out more than people thought.”

Rose says he is trying to reign in some of his bad habits that have caused public relations disasters at many live shows over the years.  He is the only remaining member of the original Guns n Roses lineup, which garnered the nickname ‘the world’s most dangerous band’ in their early years.  He says many of the live show disasters were due to his expressing genuine pain about his younger life.

“I could beat my mike stand into the stage but I was still in pain. Maybe fans liked it, but sometimes people forget you’re a person and they’re more into the entertainment value.”

The first show kicks off at 8pm Halloween night inside the Joint.

Michael Colbert Released on Bail

October 29th, 2012

Last week, an illegal sportsbetting scandal led to dozens of arrests from a joint investigation by the Nevada Gaming Control Board and the NYPD.  Arguably, the highest profile name of the accused is Michael Colbert, a sports book director for online gaming site Cantor Gaming.  But less than 24 hours later, Colbert was released on bail according to his attorney Michael Cristalli.

Colbert was indicted as part of a group of 25 defendants.  They were charged with corruption, illegal promotion of national gambling, and money laundering.  The Queens County jurisdiction out of New York filed the warrants for the arrests after uncovering over $50 million made through the illegal operation.

After one night behind bars, Colbert’s attorney negotiated a $50,000 bail for his client to be released from the Clark County Detention Center in Nevada.  He is scheduled to appear in Las Vegas Justice Court today, while also expected to be issued a summons to appear at a court hearing in New York.  The date for that hearing is yet to be determined.

Queen’s County District Attorney Richard A. Brown was the man who made the initial charges after the investigation revealed the enormity of the illegal operation.  Due to Colbert’s position with Cantor Gaming, the investigation was expected to continue by discovering any further links the online gaming site might have to the indicted individuals.  However, Cantor immediately attempted to distance itself from Colbert, suggesting he acted alone on these charges.

Despite Colbert’s bail release, it is expected Nevada Gaming and the NYPD will continue their investigation into him and the entire operation, with cooperation from the FBI.

Sportsbetting Scandal Threatens Future of Whole Industry

October 26th, 2012

In the wake of an illegal sportsbetting scandal that Nevada Gaming Control says is still continuing, there are questions surrounding the security of legal gambling in Las Vegas.  The news is particularly disheartening because online poker has recently been legalized across the state of Nevada.  Due to the scandal, players may begin questioning the legitimacy of not only sportsbetting venues but also the new online poker sites.

In the list of 25 defendants being indicted one of the most prominent is Las Vegas sports book director Mike Colbert, who also is employed by online sportsbetting site Cantor Gaming.  Due to his connections to Cantor, Nevada Gaming Control Chief Jerry Markling says the investigation is likely to turn its attention to the sportsbetting site.

“With Mr. Colbert being in his position, it’s the logical step in our investigation to see who may have known what.”

Colbert, along with the other defendants, faces charges of corruption, illegal promotion of gambling, and money laundering.  If they are found guilty, the defendants could face as much as 25 years in prison.

Colbert has been a part of the Las Vegas sportsbetting industry for nearly 10 years, having joined Cantor Gaming as its sports book director four years ago.  Colbert worked out of the M resort which is one of the sports books Cantor operates out of Vegas.  They also run the books at the Cosmopolitan, the Venetian, Palazzo, Tropicana, Hard Rock, and the Palms.

Neither Colbert nor Cantor could be reached for comment but Cantor earlier released a statement to distance themselves from their accused employee saying he acted alone.

Other sports book operators are now trying to limit the damage to their reputations in the fallout of the scandal.  The Wynn’s John Avello says a few rogue operators should not taint the whole industry.

“There are a lot of guys here in town that have been in the business for a long time and do everything 100 percent on the up-and-up.  This shouldn’t reflect poorly on them, and I will make sure that that doesn’t happen.”

The investigation will continue as the Nevada Gaming Control operates jointly with the NYPD and the FBI.