Casino cheating case headed for trial

Two New York City men accused of conspiring with baccarat dealers to cheat Mohegan Sun out of hundreds of thousands of dollars are scheduled to go on trial next month in New London Superior Court.

Jury selection began today in the cases of Hung Lit Leung, 63, and Leonard Hu, 50, who will be tried simultaneously beginning July 12 before Judge Arthur C. Hadden.

State police in 2011 charged the two men with cheating at gambling, conspiracy to cheat at gambling, first-degree larceny and conspiracy to commit first-degree larceny.

The state police casino unit investigated after the surveillance department reported that a baccarat dealer was seen marking cards with his thumb nail.

The investigators said Leung and Hu paid dealers Bong Gate Louie and Jian Bang Ng to mark the seven, eight and nine cards in baccarat and mini baccarat games, giving them a 21.53% advantage of winning each hand.

Their gambling records indicated that both men had lost more money than they won until they started cheating. From October 2010 to December 2010, Hu won $234,750 and showed no losses, according to the affidavit. He went on to win $119,200 in January 2010. Leung’s gambling record showed that he won $9,870 in November 2010, $51,400 in December 2010 and $34,600 in January 2011.

Senior Assistant State’s Attorney Stephen M. Carney is prosecuting. Defense attorney Jeremiah Donovan is representing Hu, while Leung is represented by attorney Conrad O. Seifert. Both men have been free on $30,000 bonds while their cases were pending. Though they understand some English, they are being assisted by a Chinese interpreter.

The two dealers also were arrested and have cases pending in the same court.

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