Caesars Windsor to Face a $500K Lawsuit from Problem Gambler

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Caesars Windsor faces a lawsuit from a problem gambler who was allowed to bet at the premises of the casino despite being a severe gambling addict. The lawsuit filed against the company claims Windsor staff “encouraged the victim to play.”

Tarwinder Shokar Gambles It All at Caesars Windsor

A problem gambler by the name of Tarwinder Shokar exited Casino Brantford and decided to end his life, after suffering a severe financial loss at the tables. He hopped in front of a truck, but was saved in hospital, fetching a hefty payout out on his insurance policy.

Later, he tried to go back to the tables, but couldn’t find a casino that would take him. Desperate, he turned to a tourist agency focusing on casino tours and this is how he ended up at Caesars Windsor, where he spent another $342,000 on roulette.

This happened back in October, 2013, and Mr. Shokar now wants his money back. He is suing both Caesars Windsor and the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation in a bid to recuperate $500,000 in what he says he gambled as well as punitive damages for being allowed to gamble in the first place.

His lawyer, Ian MacKinnon, believes his client has a case. A civil lawsuit has been launched and trial is now due at the end of 2020, although legal proceedings may yet be deferred until 2021.

Caesars Winsor Allegedly Knew about Shokar’s Problem Gambling

The lawsuit argues that Mr. Shokar was a diagnosed gambling and drinking addict and that was known to Caesars Winsor’s staff at the time. When he first arrived in Caesars, Mr. Shokar carried a $55,000 bank check and he was entertained by a VIP host.

In the space of just 24 hours, Mr. Shokar lost $92,000 according to Windsor Star, a local media outlet which reported on the case in detail. On October 23, Shokar came back with another bank draft worth $100,000. His losses later that day reached $250,000. The lawsuit argued that Mr. Shokar was patronized so that he could gamble more and lose more.

A special table would be open for him on his early morning returns from his home area in Toronto, as Mr. Shokar had had to retire home to bring more money. Yet, Caesars Windsor’s legal team has simply argued that Mr. Shokar had no one but himself to blame for what happened. Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP, an international corporate law firm representing the casino, had this to say:

Each time he made a wager, he chose the amount of money he wanted to wager in full knowledge of the risks associated with that wager.

The team also argues that any losses incurred by Mr. Shokar “aren’t recoverable in law.” Moreover, team further denied allegations that Windsor’s staff had got Mr. Shokar inebriated or tried to encourage him to play more.

The defence also argued that Mr. Shokar was “mentally incompetent.” Lawsuits brought against gambling companies for allowing problem gamblers play have been very common. In Mr. Shokar, lawmakers will have to decide in late 2020 or early 2021.

Yet, it’s important to note that Windsor is a vital part of Ontario’s economy. Contributing some $15 million to community projects.

Note: The article was originally reported by the Windsor Star.

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