The False Shuffle
In 2002, a husband-and-wife team of card dealers in San Diego launched a card-cheating scam that would ultimately involve over 40 accomplices and net up to $7 million from 29 casinos during a 5 year run. The Trans would corrupt dealers into the scam in order to execute the sleight-of-hand called the "false shuffle." Using a cellphone or a miniature transmitter on the lapel, spotters near the table during normal play would relay the order of a "slug," or section of the deck, to a game analyst off-site.* The dealer would then perform the "false shuffle" -- fooling the overhead surveillance camera by appearing to shuffle the deck, while leaving the "slug" intact. The game analyst used card tracking software to determine winning hands and then transmitted them back to the spotters, who would use hand signals for what the players should do -- "almost like a catcher giving signs to the pitcher in baseball," says FBI special agent Peter Casey.