LAS VEGAS, NV – A multimillionaire gambler is suing a casino over plying him with alcohol and drugs to keep him playing!
Terry Watanabe is the former owner of the Oriental Trading Company, an import/export business he sold in 2000. Since then he has touted himself as a professional philanthropist.
However, Watanabe’s penchant for gambling got the best of him, as he says he lost more than $100 million at Harrah’s, a Las Vegas casino!
But Watanabe is claiming the company coerced him into compulsive gambling. By 2006, Harrah offered to move him into their Caesars Palace, as well as 15 percent cash back on monthly table losses of $500,000 or greater, and $12,500 transportation reimbursement and a $3 million line of credit! He also claims that the casino promised to wait 60 days before cashing any markers he lost.
By the end of 2007, as his losses became unmanageable, Harrah’s not only increased his credit limit, but provided him with an unending supply of alcohol and pain killers.
Watanabe says he began gambling for multiple days in a row, “with little interruption of sleep…Harrah’s executives and employees knew or should have known…that Watanabe was rapidly running out of money.” He was often so inebriated and sleep deprived “that at times he became unconscious at his private gaming tables or slot machines.”
Watanabe is filing his lawsuit because Harrah’s is trying to claim $14.75 million he wrote in bad checks. It is unclear how much Watanabe is suing for, with charges including fraud, breach of contract, conspiracy and negligence, but considering Watanabe claims he bet more than $825 million in 2007 alone, it is likely to be significant.