- RJ Cipriani claims to have warned top resorts and federal agencies about lax security
- Claimed he was told that measures would be ‘inconvenient’ for high rollers
A leading professional gambler has revealed that he warned several Las Vegas casinos about their security protocols for many years, but was told that measures such as metal detectors would be inconvenient to the resort’s high rollers.
As police search for a motive for the mass shootings, million dollar gambler RJ Cipriani has claimed that some of the blame should be laid at the door of casino bosses, and he claims that that Mandalay Bay security team could have been more vigilant to the threat.
Fifty-nine people were killed and 527 injured when Nevada resident Stephen Paddock opened fire from a hotel suite on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay on Sunday night.
The gunman, who killed himself before police could arrive, smuggled 19 weapons into his hotel room, along with tripods and hundreds of rounds of ammunition.
Cipriani has claimed: “Since 9/11 I’ve been telling casino executives – presidents and vice presidents of the major casinos in Vegas that they have a security issue. I told them people were coming and going as gamblers and walk into casinos with money, drugs, guns, knives and no one is checked.”
Cipriani claimed that the reason no action was taken to improve security is that it might inconvenience high-stakes players.
In an interview with Sun Online, Cipriani said that he had also warned federal agencies including the FBI and Homeland Security, along with casino bosses, about the lax security at Las Vegas casinos, but his warnings fell on deaf ears:
“Rich, privileged high rollers don’t want to have their bags checked. And they bring millions of dollars to these casinos every day. To stay in any of the big resorts in Vegas you have to walk through the casino. A simple metal detector or bag check could have prevented this.”
According to Cipriani the killer was a $25,000 cash player at some Las Vegas casinos and had a $50,000 credit line with one chain of resorts.
A spokesperson for MGM resorts, which operates the Mandalay Bay, was unable to offer a response to Cipriani’s specific claims but stressed that now was about supporting all those affected as much as possible.
But Steve Wynn, of Wynn resorts, has previously spoken about the need to improve security, and the measures his business has taken to lower the threat.
Additionally, the net effect of the attack is sure to result in all casino resort businesses looking at security. Some commentators have described the mass killing as a ‘turning point’ in casino security measures, with metal detection devices surely one of the big topics for consideration.
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