Armed Robber Grabs $1.5M from Bellagio Craps Table

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An armed robber walked into the Bellagio Tuesday morning and demanded money, walking away with an estimated $1.5M in chips.

The bold move may seem like it paid off, but the robber's stolen stash contained several $25,000 chips that are rarely given out and closely monitored by casinos.

"It's not like they're currency that you can use anywhere. If you steal so many chips, in such a big, dramatic way, there's going to be a lot of scrutiny at the casino, and that makes it very difficult to cash in," says David Shwartz, director of gaming research at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, to the Las Vegas Review-Journal.

The holdup occurred at 3:50 a.m., shortly after the culprit parked his motorcycle at the north valet entrance of the casino. Still wearing a white, full-face motorcycle helmet and leather jacket, the man approached a nearby craps table, demanded and received chips, and then fled the casino with his loot.

No one was hurt and no shots were fired during the few minutes the man was in the casino--and patrons were not forced to fork over any of their winnings.

According to a report by the Associated Press, the Bellagio is not revealing whether or not the stolen stash is implanted with special identifying chips, a technology that is used by several big casinos.

Tuesday's robbery is the 10th this year in Las Vegas. The man involved in the Bellagio robbery is also a suspect in a similar crime that relieved the Suncoast Casino of $20,000 last week.

Police are reviewing surveillance footage that caught the man on tape, but said the photos reveal little about his identity.

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