Australian land based casino and pubs, clubs and hotels have a bit of a reputation as not exactly totally safe places to hang out. Some of the dangers of land based casinos in Australia were touched on in the Productivity Report into gaming, but new findings further back this up with the Gold's Coast's Jupiters getting the most heat. Media Man and Gambling911 bring in the bodyguards with bullet proof vests, baton sticks and plastic handcuffs at the ready with this special report...
Australia's Jupiters Hotel and Casino, Gold Coast (formally known as Conrad Hotel and Casino, Gold Coast) is still considered by many to be the world's most dangerous occurring to numerous gaming and media analysts, choosing to remain anonymous.
This news follows the a trail of minor and major crime happenings at the land based casino, most of which have not been reported in the mainstream media, where as James Packer's Crown Casino and Burswood Casino incidents are almost always covered in the Australian press.
Some commentators say Monte Carlo may be home to the world's most dangerous casino, with a couple of casinos on the U.S Las Vegas Strip giving them a run for their money. High profile incidents like a celebrity committing a crime at a casino, like the O.J Simpson matter in Vegas and Van der Sloot might raise the profile of a casino, but it doesn't mean that they are the most dangerous, as there are a number of criteria to judge... bashings and assaults, deaths and injuries, theft, guns and / or knives and so it goes on.
iGaming insiders sometimes joked that Grand Prive, Lucky Ace, Platinum Partners were the most dangerous online casino brands! A few years ago Casino Tropez was an online casino hangout for a players who went on to commit murder, but that shouldn't mean that that casino was dangerous - just not good luck for the player or casino on that matter. Last January a drug dealer was busted just weeks after competing in the 'Aussie Millions' Poker Championship at Crown Casino. More about these cases in the Media Man online casino reviews and of course Gambling911 has an extensive Gambling News and Casino Crime section on their website portal.
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Jupiters Hotel and Casino on the Gold Coast - Broadbeach to be precise, remains the most dangerous casino in Queensland, and one of the world's most dangerous casinos occurring to numerous sources to afraid to provide names. Jupiter's recorded more than double the number of assaults as the Treasury Casino in Queensland's biggest city, Brisbane, over the past few years.
Queensland Police numbers released under a Right To Information application have disclosed more than 1 offence was committed on average per day at the casino in 2009 including serious assaults, rape, extortion, stalking, fraud, car stealing, theft and a huge number of liquor and drunkenness offences. Get that, 1 offence per day folks! 2010 numbers were similar, with just a slight decrease in major incidents.
Some 30 assaults were listed in the charges, including 18 incidents considered grievous or serious, in comparison to a total of "only" 13 assaults in Conrad Treasury Casino in Brisbane, 4 assaults in The Reef Hotel and Casino in Cairns, and just 2 in Jupiters Townsville Hotel and Casino.
Among the more than 350 charges were 35 odd offences against the person, 92 offences against property and 230 other charges including drugs, drunkenness and good order, or minor, offences.
Full details on the the deaths, guns and knives cases are not in the public domain.
The local Mermaid Beach Member For Parliament Ray Stevens (Media Man tag "The Crippler") advised the casino was by a country mile the biggest 24-hour venue in the state so it was not surprising there were a ton of incidents.
"It also shows an attitude of zero tolerance," he said, balancing the scales.
"I suppose the concerning thing is (assaults) were double the number for the Brisbane Treasury."
Tabcorp Holdings Ltd, owner of Jupiters (formally Conrad) advised 15,000 people a day visited the Gold Coast based casino which was about 5.5 million a year compared to about 3 million who visited the Brisbane casino owned by the gaming giant. Tabcorp remains the major competitor to Crown Limited in the Australian gaming sector.
The casino advised press it operated on a "0 tolerance" approach towards illegal and undesirable behaviour and had one of the best surveillance systems available in the world. Surveillance involves more than just the famed "Eye In The Sky" and casino bouncers aka "gorillas in suits".
"Combined with highly trained staff and constant vigilance means that detection rates of illegal and undesirable behaviours are very high," said the PR release.
All incidents were reported to police and to the Office of Liquor and Gaming Regulation.
The presser said casino safety and security officers often responded to incidents outside the venues, providing emergency assistance, first-aid and contacting police.
"It is important to note that in 2009 over 8.5 million people visited the southeast Queensland casinos," it noted.
"Therefore, the total number of incidents reported to the Queensland Police during that time represents just .02% of the total number of visitors."
Gold Coast police superintendent Jim Keogh, told News Limited it was difficult to compare the figures between the two cities.
"The Gold Coast (casino) would be busier than Brisbane. They are worlds apart. Brisbane seems to cater for a different demographic."
A Media Man spokesperson said "What type of demographic is attracted to Conrad Jupiters is open to interpretation. I've been there myself, thankfully with no incidents. The numbers don't lie, but Jupiter's do bring in a lot of punters and tourists, so there's going to be incidents from time to time. Still, one case per days still seems high. Not as high we understand at Star City in Casino or Crown Casino in Melbourne. At least the Tabcorp powers that be are aware of the situation and are taking action, rather than closing their eyes and ears to the matter. I guess the Aussie casino wars continue to evolved, this time with security and crime being a sub sector of the wars. We commend the take no prisoners and zero tolerance mantra and policy".
Punters, er readers, stay glued to Media Man reports via Gambling911 for more "can't miss" information on Australian and global casino wars, land based and online.
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Online casinos, perhaps recognizing the sometimes crime link with land based casinos, going back to 'The Mob' in Vegas and Chicago have a number of game titles with dangerous titles such as The Godfather, Hitman, Heist, Mafia Millions, Predator, High Noon and Resident Evil? Just good Hollywood fun or something perhaps more sinister? In the meantime Aussies continue to call for an Underbelly and Kerry Packer themed slot game, but have to settle for Pink Panther within weeks and Andre The Giant likely before year end. Oh well, beggars can't be choosers. PartyGaming, Virgin Casino and Captain Cooks remain some of the world's must trusted, ethical and popular online casinos, with Party leading the charge down under followed by Captain Cook.
So, whether you prefer land based casinos or online, please take precautions. As always, know the odds, bet with your head, not over it, and have fun. Good luck.
*Greg Tingle is a special contributor for Gambling911
*Media Man http://www.mediamanint.com is primarily a media, publicity and internet portal development company. They cover a dozen industry sectors including gaming.
*The writer owns shares in Crown Limited
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