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Judge’s Son Arrested for Bellagio Robbery

3 February 2011 by admin

bellagio robberIt took some time, but the inevitable has happened: Police have made an arrest in connection with the December robbery of the Bellagio Resort & Casino. As suspected, the arrest came when a suspect attempted to sell the chips obtained during the heist.

There are many reasons not to rob a Las Vegas casino. The most obvious one is that stealing is wrong. If that fact somehow gets past your morality filter, another good reason is that you will probably not get away with it. Las Vegas casinos have very good security, so the chances of being identified are very good. Even if you can get away without being identified, as was the case here, if you steal chips, they only have value in the casino, which means you generally have to return to the scene of the crime to cash them in.

Any cop will tell you that a high percentage of suspects are caught when they return to the scene of the crime. That is what happened here. Anthony Michael Carleo was arrested while staying at the Bellagio, the very hotel he is accused of robbing, late Wednesday. According to authorities, Carleo met with undercover officers and attempted to sell them high-value chips that were likely taken during the casino robbery.

BellagiosuspectOnce the robber fled the scene with the chips, the Bellagio took the high-value chips off of rotation and replaced them with a new series. By doing so, they would know that anyone cashing in chips after that time were using chips taken during or before the robbery. Anyone who tries to cash in the chips would be subject to extra scrutiny. Carleo likely knew that, which is why he allegedly attempted to sell the chips on the black market rather than cashing them in at the casino.

On December 14, 2010, a man now believed to be Carleo entered the Bellagio wearing a motorcycle helmet that concealed his face. He robbed the casino at gunpoint, making off with $1.5 million in casino chips, and sped away on the motorcycle. The same suspect is also believed to have committed armed robbery at the Suncoast Casino on December 8.

Carleo, 29, is the son of Las Vegas Municipal Court Judge George Assad. Carleo is a Colorado resident, but filed for bankruptcy in 2009 and is believed to have been living with Assad in Las Vegas at the time of his arrest. Assad worked as a craps and blackjack dealer to pay for law school.

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