An Uber driver, aspiring to be a police officer has just plead guilty to stealing casino chips to the value of AU$125,000. Gunawan Akay, a 39-year-old Australian, stole 25 chips from a baccarat table, valued at AU$5000 each. He did so on the 23rd of December in the Maple Room of Crown Casino Melbourne, before fleeing in a taxi.
Stolen Casino Chips
Kristina Kothrakis, the barrister serving Akay stated at the Melbourne County Court on Friday that it was clear that it was a desperate crime.
She claims that it was virtually impossible for Akay to get away with it. In addition, after swiping the chips, he managed to drop most of them in his escape. She added that none of the chips have been recovered.
Kothrakis claimed that when Akay got home, he only had three chips left. She further claims that her client was overrun by guilt and threw the chips away. Casino chips are worthless unless they are exchanged for real AU Dollars at the casino.
Missing Casino Chips
The Judge, Claire Quin, found it very hard to believe that 22 of the very large AU$5000 casino chips, just managed to disappear. Apparently, Akay and his girlfriend were suffering highly in terms of finances. The breaking point was reached when Akay was handed an eviction notice after late rent, as well as losing an apartment in a bad investment.
Just one month before the theft occurred, Akay was approached by Crown staff members requesting that he become a Crown Gold Rewards member. Becoming a member would allow him access to free parking and vouchers. Akay accepted the offer. It is said that he had an argument with his girlfriend on the day of the theft, whereby she complained that he kept gambling away their money. It was then that he took the opportunity grab the row of casino chips he hoped would solve all of his problems.
After Akay took the money and ran, he was caught on multiple CCTV cameras. He was ashamed for his actions. Prosecutor Adrian Trotman stated that there was little to no attempt to compensate the casino for the theft.
Akay will be assessed and sentenced for a Community Correction Order on Wednesday.