Posted September 22, 2013 by John Baintree in News

Dennis Nikrasch – The infamous slots cheat


However, not everybody can have this attitude towards gambling and those who feel cheated by the sport sometimes try to cheat back by gaming the system.  This was true of Dennis Nikrasch, dubbed the “greatest slot machine cheat in gambling history”.

The story begins back in the seventies when Nikrasch and other cheats would manage to cheat the slot machines with mechanical reels.  He served a prison sentence in the eighties after stealing slot machine key imprints which he used to open access panels and rig jackpot payoffs.  Did he learn his lesson?  Like hell did he!

As technology progressed, so did Dennis’ abilities.  Come the computer age, he was able to use a computer generated device to beat the machines in minutes.  He could fix a machine (with a lookout keeping watch and blocking any view of what Nikrasch was up to) and then leave.  Not long afterwards an associate of Nikrasch’s would play the machine and hit the jackpot.

Nikrasch and his posse roamed Las Vegas hitting a total of ten times over the space of a year in the late nineties, winning cars and cash jackpots all the way.  He was eventually arrested while trying to win a $17 million jackpot with which he intended to move to France.  He was charged, with accomplices and given an eight year sentence.  He was released early in 2004 but is faced with a lifetime ban from Las Vegas Casinos.

Although it’s thought that Nikrasch cut a deal to share his cheating secrets for a lighter sentence, Dennis apparently refused to talk.  Others claim that Dennis Nikrasch provided consultancy services to gambling authorities on how to spot and stop slot machine cheats.

Obviously, with technological advances in security, it’s getting harder and harder to cheat anywhere in Las Vegas – “damned near impossible” the casino operators hope.  However, there will always be those who are willing to give it a go when it comes to cheating no matter how difficult and no matter how state of the art the deterrents are.