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Alleged Bellagio Robber Arraigned

8 February 2011 by admin

BellagiosuspectAnthony Michael Carleo, the man accused of robbing the Bellagio in December, was arraigned Monday in a Las Vegas justice court. Carleo, 29, is facing six felony charges and his preliminary hearing is scheduled for February 23.

Carleo is believed to be the man who ran into the Bellagio casino on December 14 wearing a motorcycle helmet, robbed the casino at gunpoint, and fled the scene on motorcycle. No one was hurt during the robbery, but the suspect made off with approximately $1.5 million worth of stolen casino chips.

During the arraignment, the prosecution revealed Carleo’s charges as burglary while in possession of a deadly weapon, two counts of assault with a deadly weapon, two counts of robbery with use of a deadly weapon and carrying a concealed firearm or deadly weapon. Carleo did not enter a plea, since Nevada does not allow pleas on felony charges in their justice courts. When the case is brought to a district court, Carleo will have to enter a plea.

Shortly after the robbery, the Bellagio took their current series of chips off the floor and replaced them with a new series. That makes it easy to identify if someone tries to cash in older chips. Last week, Carleo was arrested when trying to sell some of the stolen chips to undercover officers. Before trying to sell his chips, Carleo was reported to have been playing in the casino, wagering the stolen chips on the casino floor. He was also staying in a room at the Bellagio at the time of his arrest.

This case is bound to be big news in Nevada. Not only were people shocked by the brazen nature of the armed robbery of one of the best-known casinos in the world, but there are also the political ramifications. Carleo is the son of Las Vegas Municipal Court Judge George Assad. Anthony Michael Carleo is currently being held on $15,000 bail.

Since we know that Carleo was in possession of the stolen casino chips, maybe he can try the popular “I just found them” defense. A Kansas man was acquitted after claiming that he happened upon $100,000 of stolen casino chips in a trash bag by the side of the road. Hey, it’s worth a try, right?

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