The “Wizard of Odds” a well-known and used website among the gaming industry has come under fire in a recent court case.
The case involving two gamblers are accused of cheating at mini-baccarat by getting dealers at the Mohegan Sun casino to mark the cards. Hung Lit Leung, 63, and Leonard Hu, 50 are fighting a prosecution, accusing them of using the advantage given by marking the 7, 8 and 9 cards in the decks dealt. Those familiar with mini-baccarat will know that those three cards are the most important to making the best hand.
When the marked cards were seen to be dealt out of the shoe, both accused are said to have increased their bets significantly with the casino saying they lost hundreds of thousands because of the scam.
On Monday during the trial Mohegan Sun shift and pit manager Robert Gallagher demonstrated using a small table how the cards were marked and also indicated how the 7, 8 and 9 gave them a mathematical advantage, quoting from a printed sheet of paper.
Defence attorney Jeremiah Donovan then asked the Manager to show where he got his stats from. It turned out to be a print out from the “Wizard of Odds” website offering the mathematical stats on advantage.
Then followed a question on how the website was able to offer such statistical data and how this was verified, sadly for the luckless manager he was unable to offer any reference that the website has been officially verified, except to say that most of the gambling industry used the site for such information.
“The math is very complicated,” Gallagher testified. “Ten years ago, you would have had to do some hard math. Today it’s easily available on Google.”
The defence then went further saying that the site had never been peer tested and just because it is online does not mean it is accurate or every website would be gospel because it is online.
The “Wizard of Odds” is owned and operated by Michael Shackleford, a trained actuary well-known for his analysis of the math of casino games. According to the website, he is an adjunct professor of casino math at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.
The case continues.