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Feds Says Casinos Should Turn Away Marijuana Industry Members


casino marijuanaThis week the 2014 Bank Secrecy Act took place in Las Vegas. In attendance were members from the banking industry, the casino industry, and members from the federal government. There were no doubt many topics covered at the event but one of them should be of particular interest to members of the marijuana industry. Federal regulators at the event said that casinos should not accept bets from members of the marijuana industry unless those particular customers passed an extensive background check, and have their bets monitored by the federal government.


In order for a casino to knowingly accept a bet from someone in the marijuana industry, it would need to perform what Dowling described as a “criminal background check” and then file reports every 90 days to federal regulators on the gambler’s activities.

Even then, the casinos cannot be certain the federal government will not pursue criminal or civil charges against them.

I don’t know about you, but I have never heard of such a thing being asked for members of any other legal industry in America. Yes, I get it, marijuana is illegal at the federal level. However, so are many other things that are legal at the state level yet are illegal at the federal level. Why is the marijuana industry being singled out? Assuming casinos wanted to follow the federal request, how would enforcement even be possible?

Are card dealers going to ask everyone when they first sit down at the table, ‘excuse me sir, are you a dispensary owner?’ Or, ‘maam, do you make medical marijuana edibles and sell them at a local co-op?’ What about ancillary marijuana business owners? Next time I sit down at a slot machine in Reno, is the pit boss going to come over and ask me to fill out a federal background check? This is absolutely ridiculous, and unrealistic. It’s yet another obvious attempt at the federal government trying to cling to failed public policy.


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Johnny Green


  1. Luke Nathaniel Walker on

    a few questions about the article: where does the “per KQED” Quote end? and why is there no context given to the quote. And is this a Suggestion by the “Federal Regulators” or a mandate to the casino industry? Questions were posed in the article with no speculative discussion. What are the “…..other things that are legal at the state level yet are illegal at the federal level.” ?

  2. Fire_M_Leonhart on

    You know, if I spent an entire career on a failed war on drugs, I’d probably pissed off that I put so much time into getting nothing done.
    I’d probably also be pissed that I had a boss as supremely ignorant and uneducated as Michelle Leonhart.
    It’s time for the DEA to be dismantled. Put their budget toward something useful, like education.

  3. Doc Deadhead on

    Alcohol distillers are in the same group as pot growers, they are BOTH doing something that is illegal at the federal level for the individual person to be able to do, so………….why is the marijuana industry going through such crap? Simple, there are still pot haters in public office that need to be voted out.

    Everyone do your part for the movement this fall and especially next fall, VOTE OUT THE HATERS!

    Guaranteed the haters are having cocktails and driving drunk while laughing at the cannabis movement.

    It is time for them to realize being anti-pot will be political suicide.

    BTW, who exactly were the folks from the ‘government’ and what department were they with that they can tell an entire industry who they can and can’t take money from?

    Doc Deadhead

    1st Place Hybrid 2013 Caregivers Cup – Ann Arbor

    3rd Place Hybrid 2013 Green Cup – Traverse City
    4 entries in the High Times Cannabis Cup in Flint this July!

    Legalize, Tax and Regulate JUST like Alcohol, no more, no less!

  4. How about bets from tax cheats? Child-support deadbeats? Incompetent parents? Speeding violators? Jaywalkers? I smell the loonies at the DEA somewhere in this Kafkaesque charade.

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