Judge: Unshuffled cards void game, winnings must be returned

This Aug. 31, 2012 photo shows the exterior of the Golden Nugget casino in Atlantic City N.J. The casino said on Thursday Feb. 12, 2015 that a judge sided with it in a lawsuit over games of mini-baccarat played in 2012 with unshuffled cards. The judge ruled that gamblers who won $1.5 million in the disputed games must give it back. (AP Photo/Wayne Parry)
This Aug. 31, 2012 photo shows the exterior of the Golden Nugget casino in Atlantic City N.J. The casino said on Thursday Feb. 12, 2015 that a judge sided with it in a lawsuit over games of mini-baccarat played in 2012 with unshuffled cards. The judge ruled that gamblers who won $1.5 million in the disputed games must give it back. (AP Photo/Wayne Parry)

ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (AP) – Gamblers who won $1.5 million at an Atlantic City, New Jersey, casino after realizing the cards hadn’t been shuffled have been ordered to return the money.

Superior Court Judge Donna Taylor has sided with the Golden Nugget casino in its long-running dispute with 14 gamblers who say the fault wasn’t theirs and they should be allowed to keep their winnings.

At issue were games of mini-baccarat played in April 2012 using decks of cards the casino had paid a manufacturer to pre-shuffle but that hadn’t been shuffled.

Once players realized the pattern in which the cards were emerging they drastically upped their bets from $10 a hand to $5,000 and won 41 straight hands.

The ruling was issued Monday and publicized by the casino Thursday. It’s likely to be appealed.

(Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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