Black Hawk casinos fined record $200,000 for sloppy accounting |

Black Hawk casinos fined record $200,000 for sloppy accounting

Asociated Press

DENVER – State regulators fined the owners of the Mardi Gras Casino in Black Hawk $200,000 for sloppy accounting practices, the highest fine imposed on a Colorado casino since gambling was legalized in three mountain towns in 1993.The Limited Gaming Control Commission on Thursday fined Las Vegas-based Golden Gaming Inc. a total of $270,000 for accounting irregularities at its three casinos in Black Hawk. The Mardi Gras Casino was fined $200,000, the Golden Gates Casino $50,000; and the Golden Gulch Casino $20,000.The commission said the casinos failed to prepare statistical reports, failed to properly investigate irregularities and failed to properly maintain surveillance tapes to conduct those investigations. There also were other accounting irregularities, the agency said.The infractions occurred from January, when Golden Gaming acquired the casinos, through June, the commission said. The casinos agreed to take steps to ensure compliance, the agency said.Assistant Attorney General Ceri Williams said the Mardi Gras Casino was fined so much because the violations were extensive and because it is the state’s seventh-largest casino.A Golden Gaming spokesman did not immediately return a call Friday.State Gaming Division chief auditor Georgine Zalesky said the agency is considering a full audit of the casinos, and said the fines should cover any potential shortfall in revenue they reported.Division records show Colorado casinos have paid about $1.9 million in fines since 1993 for infractions such as failure to properly document revenue and for blackjack dealers showing their hidden cards to gamblers, The Denver Post reported.Nearly half the fines were for poor accounting procedures, the records show.The state requires casinos to report their finances to protect against theft and ensure the casinos are properly taxed, said gaming division spokesman Don Burmania. Casinos with higher revenues pay a higher tax rate.In fiscal 2005, casinos paid nearly $93 million in state and local taxes. —On the Net:Gaming Division: Gaming Inc.:—Information from: The Denver Post, http://www.denverpost.comVail, Colorado

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