Cheating Scandal Hits New Cyprus Casino

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The temporary casino at the site of the first casino resort in Cyprus is involved in a cheating scandal and a roulette dealer has been arrested.

30-second summary

  • A dealer at a temporary casino in Cyprus allegedly helped a player win at roulette
  • The dealer is in jail and facing charges of fraud
  • This temporary casino is at the site of the development of a major resort casino
  • The permanent casino is expected to be complete by 2021 and will be a five-star resort

Details of the allegations

A dealer who works in the Melco Resort’s temporary casino has been accused of someone playing roulette at his table to win 18 times over the course of about a month.

The dealer is 44 years old but his name has not been made public. The player in question is 53 years old. The staff at the facility became suspicious after they saw him acting in a strange manner through the CCTV that covers the facility.

He was immediately put under arrest and has spent a number of days in jail. The casino issued a statement admonishing this behavior and emphasized that it would not be tolerated at their facility. The dealer is facing charges of fraud and there could be further charges as the investigation develops.

Details of the casino

Melco Resorts is building a casino in Cyprus that is scheduled to be complete by 2021. In the meantime, they have been operating a temporary casino at the site since June 2018. The company also is developing another three casinos throughout the Mediterranean. The Cyprus casino’s name will be the City of Dreams Mediterranean and will cost them about $621m (£468m) to develop.

In December, the company opened another temporary casino facility in Cyprus. This is at the international airport in Larnaca, which is the third biggest city in the country. There are 42 gaming machines in two spaces of the airport. One is available to everyone in the airport while the other one is only for those who are getting ready to depart.

Melco can open these satellite facilities because of an exclusive concession from 2016. The Nicosia facility currently has 50 slot machines and five gaming tables.

About 600 people visit this temporary facility daily. One of these visitors was a tourist who won half a million euro playing roulette.

There are plans to open facilities in Ayia Napa and Paphos soon. The Limassol temporary facility has 242 slot machines and 33 gaming tables. This facility will not operate once the casino development completes, but the other four satellite facilities will still be operating.

Optimism in the region

There is a lot of growth happening in Cyprus in recent times. There have been calls for many years to develop a casino resort and this is finally happening. Melco has a worldwide reputation as a provider of entertainment and leisure, which is why they are seen as the ideal partner for this project.

This comes as the levels of tourism in the country are exploding. Cyprus attracts over 3 million tourists each year, which is impressive for a country that has a population of only 900,000.

With the development of this casino resort, there are hopes it will bring another 300,000 people to the island each year. This will be of great value for the local economy and will help to create a lot of new jobs.

Melco has a history of developing casino resorts having a presence in the likes of Macau and Manila for over a decade. The Cyprus casino will be a five-star resort with more than 500 rooms, along with exclusive villas and suites.

There will be 11 world-class bars and restaurants, as well as all of the leading leisure, sports, and recreation facilities. The casino itself will have 1,200 slot machines and over 140 tables.

Melco holds the license for 30 years and has an exclusivity agreement for 15 years. This will allow them to cement a presence in the region without having to worry about any major competitors nearby.