Underground Blackjack Casino Unearthed Below Center of Moscow
Mar 9, 2011
Regardless of the total ban on all gambling activities in the capital of Russia, law enforcement officers still discover illegal clubs and casinos on a weekly basis.
Gamblers used to gather in the basement of an anonymous looking drab building on Orlikov Lane – just minutes away from the Kremlin and the Red Square. The deep basement was a former bomb shelter as well as a true underground casino dedicated to blackjack card games. Players were unpleasantly surprised yesterday when an FSB and MVD special forces joint task force suddenly broke down the doors. The para-military police discovered almost two hundred players within the casino. Further investigation revealed that the casino was supposed to be closed a year ago, but despite all the regulations, continued to operate.
All traditions of a proper casino were followed inside the underground gambling club. Absence of windows, clocks or watches made figuring out the time of the day impossible thus providing the casino with an extra edge. A metal detector at the entrance (to ensure guns were checked-in at the door) and a state of the art multiple video surveillance systems were all in place.
The underground club even had its own fully stocked kitchen to provide gourmet soups, salads, cold appetizers to hungry gamblers taking a well deserved break from implementing their newest card counting system. To the delight of the hungry Special Forces the casinos refrigerators had all delicatessens that especially go well with expensive vodka: salmon, black caviar, pelmeni, dorado and other sea food. And, naturally, a huge stock of liquor.
The casino security turned out to be retired KGB, FSB and MVD operatives, turned the casino raid into a touching reunion party, as current and retired agents drank to each others health (quickly emptying the casino’s expensive collection), ate caviar, and confiscated everything else they desired as ‘evidence’. The casino patrons, who were not connected to anyone important, remained prone on the floor throughout the five hour long ‘raid’.
“There was no shooting, no drugs, no nothing in here. People are just coming to quietly, peacefully sit and spend their leisure time discussing current blackjack strategy,” commented one of the club’s visitors, Alexander Valenkov, “Now I can’t find my car keys, my wallet, my watch and my guns.”
The club’s gamblers were not charged nor arrested and were eventually released. The owner of this establishment, however, is likely to be prosecuted unless it is discovered that the owner is a high ranking member of the government. Initially the casino staff tried to convince the special police forces that people played inside the casino not for money, but for fun. Such explanations are heard during every raid on similar establishments and naturally weren’t taken seriously by the experienced secret police officers.
Tags: Alexander Valenkov, Blackjack, Card counting, Casino, dorado and other sea food, FSB, Gambling, Games, KGB, law enforcement officers, metal detector, MVD, Red Square, Russia, Underground Blackjack Casino Unearthed Below Center, United States Army Special Forces, video surveillance systems