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Canadian Citizen Counterfeit Horror at Venetian Macao

We got an email about an hour ago from Laurent S., a 21 year old Canadian citizen visiting the Venetian Macao, who claims (in a very long letter) to have been thrown in jail after a casino cashier claimed that one of the US$50 bills he was attempting to convert to HKD was counterfeit.

Here's an excerpt:


I am a 21 Year old Canadian Citizen, with no criminal record.

I had a TERRIBLE AND DANGEROUS experience at the Venetian Macao.

On July 18th evening I arrived at the Venetian Macao hotel and casino resort. I booked the Venetian for 3 nights, July 18th, July 19th and July 20th. I arrived July 18th entered the room, took a quick shower and decided to hit the tables. I went to exchange $500US dollars at the cashier counter. After gambling for a couple hours I went back to my room took another shower, relaxed for a bit and went for a late dinner at the local Venetian Macao Morton's of Chicago restaurant. After finishing dinner my friend and I went back to the tables. It took a quick 30 minutes for me to empty my pockets of HKD Dollars, so I quickly went to the cashier counter to exchange more US Money. I presented $420US dollars to the cashier, exactly 8 $50 US Notes, and 1 $20 US note. The Cashier accepted all but 1 $50 note, claiming it was counterfeit and asked me to wait.

That's when it all started, about 15 Security guards circled around me as if I was about to run for my life, over 1 $50 US note, that to this day is still not 100% confirmed it is counterfeit.

At that time it was approximately 2am July 19th, More security staff and security managers surrounded me. I requested an english speaking manager as they were all speaking to each other in mandarin and kept me in the dark. I kept requesting for an english manager, and they kept saying he was coming, he was coming. Meanwhile it took approximately 2 hours to finally meet the english manager I asked for. By that time, a police officer from the Macao Police department was already on sight.

He goes on to discuss what happened at the police station as well as how the Venetian's staff handled the affair during interrogation as well as after he was finally released (they offered him a comp breakfast!). It's quite compelling and checking our server logs, I can see that the IP address of the sender resolves to a location in Macau.

I've forwarded Laurent's email to the Venetian Macao's PR department for comment and will update this post if/when we hear back. We're going to hold back publishing Laurent's complete letter until we can get some kind of 3rd party confirmation that this actually took place.

If you work for the Venetian Macao and may have witnessed or can confirm or know about this please contact us.

We'll have more on this story as it evolves.


Comments & Discussion:

As much as this may sound shocking to an American or a Canadian and something you would not expect to happen in a casino it is a standard operating procedure for Macau.
All illegal acts are taken very seriously and suspects and victims are treated pretty much the same way. Remember you are guilty until proven innocent.
This is not the fault of the Venetian as it would have had the same outcome no matter which casino it happened in.
In over 90% of crimes whether minor or serious no charges are laid as people know that filing a complaint can end up in a 4 to 6 hour "interview".
The Macau crime figures you read about are in no way an indication of the crimes which occur.

Possibly, I've seen 'Midnight Express' one too many times. The possibility of getting thrown in the can for changing currency that ends up in your bill fold from any number of sources scares the crap out of me. I'm curious where Laurent got a hold of this $50 bill to begin with... most real gamblers know that $50 bills are considered bad luck and should be rejected whenever presented with them. Thats why they don't give them out in casino ATM's in Vegas!

i live in Macau and they are super-strict about testing the validity of currency. but whenever i've held "counterfeits" they just give that bill back to me and say they can't accept it.

Hi Chuck, we miss you are you on Holiday? im in Macau now and really worried about over capacity in the market here. Its going to be interesting to see how things look in 2012 when most places are completed. City of Dreams will be an amazing project when its finished.....lets hope they can fill it!

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