Lawsuit: Encore Boston cheating blackjack players, withholding slot winnings

EVERETT, MASS. (WHDH) - A class-action complaint filed Monday in Middlesex County Superior Court claims the newly-opened Encore Boston Harbor in Everett is cheating blackjack players and withholding slot machine winnings.

The lawsuit alleges the resort casino has tilted blackjack payout odds against players in violation of Massachusetts law, according to a complaint published by the Law Offices of Joshua N. Garick.

Encore allegedly “paid its customers odds of 6 to 5 when a player is dealt a blackjack when Massachusetts law clearly and unambiguously states that a player who is dealt a blackjack shall be paid at odds of 3 to 2,” the lawsuit stated.

Such a change in the payout structure would result in an additional $30 million more in profits each year, the law firm estimated.

“In casino gaming, it is said that the house always wins,” the lawsuit added. “With the odds so drastically in its favor, it is unfathomable that a casino would intentionally resort to cheating so as to increase its statistical edge over the player.”

The lawsuit also cited Encore’s alleged failure to refund slot credits to customers once a player cashed out on a slot machine.

“When a slot player cashes out his or her winnings at a ticket redemption machine positioned throughout the casino, these machines only pay out in whole dollar amounts, without paying change, and without instruction on how to obtain the balance,” the lawsuit said. “The unredeemed change, therefore, is never returned to the player and is simply added to Encore’s coffers.”

The $2.6 billion resort opened for business in June.

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