Durban - A CROUPIER who tried to defraud Sibaya Casino and Entertainment Kingdom lost her job and, on Wednesday, was convicted of fraud in the Verulam Regional Court.
Jenevieve Amichan, 25, of Phoenix, was arrested and charged with fraud in 2018.
The mother of one was accused of inappropriately operating a touch-bet roulette machine, which resulted in the casino losing more than R400 000.
Her co-accused, Sunisha Harry, and brothers, Roshan and Rakesh Harilall, were also arrested. They were players on the machine Amichan operated. However, the State failed to prove any wrongdoing on their part, and they were found not guilty.
According to the charge sheet, between December 2016 and February 2017, Amichan was found to have operated the machine slower than normal on several occasions.
This resulted in the machine triggering an error message, and it would display the winning number on the player’s terminal.
Amichan failed to contact a technician for assistance. “She would then continue spinning the roulette wheel faster, even though she knew the game was null and void, as the winning numbers were already displayed.”
The charge sheet further stated that during this time, Harry and the Harilall brothers occupied the terminals.
“She caused prejudice to Sibaya Casino by allowing the game to continue and allowing them to play late bets and win jackpots,” read the charge sheet.
In handing down judgment, Magistrate Betty Rawheath said Amichan failed to report the errors.
“Evidence from the witnesses about the gaming industry rules, suggest that accused two (Amichan), ought to have known how to operate the machine and that errors should be reported.
“According to accused two’s evidence, she did not have sufficient training on the touch-bet. However, the rules are clear, she never called for help. She continued to facilitate the prompts. If it had been one or two instances on different days, it could be called a mistake.”
Magistrate Rawheath added that Amichan’s conduct suggested she knew someone was going to benefit.
“Although she could not know which person was going to benefit, she would know after each bet, that one or (the) other is winning.”
She added that the State depended on a statement from Harry, which suggested Amichan would attain monetary gain after each of their wins.
“There is something called undue influence - police presence and it affects people that are in a vulnerable position. She (Harry) felt pressure because of all the attention on her. She would not have given that statement had she not been put in a room. The evidence is not weighty or significant to convict the other accused.”