Published on: August 26, 2022, 03:02h.
Last update on: August 26, 2022, 03:44h.
For the first time, an individual with no history of gambling cheating or involvement in organized crime has been listed in Nevada’s infamous “Black Book” of gambling regulators.
The book is a list of people barred from all casinos in the state – permanently. The only way to be removed from this list is to die.
The addition of Kendrick Laronte Weatherspoon, a notorious pimp with a dismal criminal history of violence against women, underscores authorities’ concern over the prevalence of sex trafficking in Las Vegas casinos.
Priority to the feds
It’s probably no coincidence that the Nevada Gaming Control Board’s decision to blackball Weatherspoon on Thursday came a day after new U.S. State’s Attorney Jason Frierson announced that sex trafficking would be a priority for officials. federal law enforcement premises.
“We have conferences and conventions. We have the Super Bowl coming up,” Frierson said at a press conference Wednesday. “I think we will have the opportunity to make it clear that Nevada is not a haven for sex traffickers.”
Las Vegas is one of the worst destinations in the United States for sex trafficking, according to the US government. It has about 5,600 victims in Nevada each year.
Casinos are a breeding ground for pimps because they are places where a lot of money changes hands. They also attract customers willing to spend money and take risks and are usually attached to resorts.
The black book
The Black Book was created in 1960 to reassure tourists that Las Vegas was not run by the Mafia. It targets people with “notorious or disreputable reputations that would damage public trust and confidence that the gaming industry is free from criminal or corrupt developments”.
On Thursday, Gen. Michael Somps said Weatherspoon met that listing criteria, as did his Nevada felony conviction.
Since 2000, Weatherspoon has faced 30 cases in court in Las Vegas. Charges include drug trafficking, impaired driving, burglary, domestic battery, adult sex trafficking, battery by strangulation, sexual assault, kidnapping and accepting the proceeds of prostitution. He was expelled from at least five Las Vegas casinos for his activities.
At Thursday’s hearing, commissioners debated whether Weatherspoon should be barred from casinos when there were others like him. But they ultimately decided to make an example of the 44-year-old because he was clearly using Las Vegas casinos as a base for his operations.
The control panel voted unanimously to launch the book at Weatherspoon.
Weatherspoon did not attend Thursday’s meeting. But from now on, if he enters any casino in Nevada, it’s automatically a felony and incarceration.
The list was last added in 2018, when a cheating ring was discovered in Bellagio.