Poker Dealer Fined $75,000 for $500 theft

From OnlinePoker....A Pennsylvania-based poker dealer, the 26 year old Matthey Eisenberg, was fined $75,000 for skimming $500 worth of poker chips from the Rivers Casino in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA.

Security at the Rivers Casino grew increasingly suspicious of Eisenberg when they saw his declared chips grow from $200 a day to around $500 and saw in security tapes that he was occasionally dropping $1 and $5 chips into his own tip jar to bump up his earnings on 108 different occasions.

There have been other cases of theft from casinos over the years but this was the first time the minimum fine of $75,000 under Pennsylvania’s gaming act had been enforced by a court. As Eisenberg’s Attorney Michael Santicola explained:

“It shocks the conscience that we would have a legislature that would write a law that puts the casino above every other business, above a church, above a senior citizen’s home, above you, above me.”

Santicola then went on to describe the penalty as cruel and unusual punishment, making it extremely difficult for his client to get his life back on track after the incident.

However, District Attorney Stephen Zappala saw nothing wrong with the $75,000 fine and commented later:

“We believe that the crime fits the statute as written and we believe that the General Assembly wrote the statute to protect the integrity of the casino process. We also believe that it’s important for the patrons of the casino to know that there is a process in place to keep them from being ripped off and to deter the type of behavior that was described in court this morning.”

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 I tried to find more on this story (some past transgression by Matthey Eisenberg) that could justify throwing the book at him. I couldn't find anything about him.

 I did find that the DA is a member of the "Ruling Elite" in Pennsylvania. 3 Generations in either Legal or Legislative, (grandfather, Frank J. Zappala past Pennsylvania attorney, magistrate and state legislator... father,  Stephen Zappala Sr. is a former Penn. Supreme Court Chief Justice)  then I found the judge in the case (Judge Joe Williams III) maybe up for re-elecetion.

 Now my understanding of US law, the DA gives a sentencing request (which I didn't see), but it's the judge who imposes the sentence. So there must be a large group of voters who want to see this...politics & justice working together...PFFT!



motriuc Silver 1
2519d ago

lol.a real smart guy!