Casino Crime Roundup: Arson Fire Leads to Arrest

Posted on: December 19, 2023, 02:41h. 

Last updated on: December 19, 2023, 10:55h.

A former employee was arrested recently in connection with the intentional fire set last week at the Desert Rose Casino in Alturas, Calif., authorities said.

Desert Rose Casino in Alturas, Calif
The Desert Rose Casino in Alturas, Calif., pictured above. An arson fire at the casino led to an arrest. (Image:

Calob Matthew Gersalia, 25, was charged with intentionally starting a fire at the property at approximately 8 a.m. last Thursday, according to California TV station KNVN. Gersalia is scheduled to appear in court on Tuesday.

Several firefighters responded to the scene to extinguish the blaze, which was contained to the casino’s offices.

The Modoc County Sheriff’s Office arrested Gersalia after watching surveillance video and conducting an investigation. Calfire also took part in the inquiry, according to the Sierra Daily News.

The surveillance video showed someone at the site, who was wearing a hooded sweatshirt and jeans. It’s unclear if the person in the video is the arrested suspect.

MGM Grand Detroit Prostitution

Nine suspects were arrested recently after allegedly taking part in a prostitution and human trafficking ring around metropolitan Detroit and in other locations. They used rooms at the MGM Grand Detroit as part of the ring, authorities said.

The human trafficking organization was unraveled after authorities raided two hotel rooms at the MGM Detroit, five spas, and two residences in Troy and Livonia, Mich., authorities said on Monday.

In total, authorities conducted 42 court-approved searches in the year-long investigation, according to Macomb County Sheriff Anthony Wickersham.

Xiaohong Ban, 52, of Chicago, was arrested last Wednesday at the casino and was charged with prostitution/keeping a house of ill fame.

Authorities also are searching for two other suspects, identified as Lori Cai, 31, of Troy, and Shuying Ding, 41, of Appleton, Wisc. Warrants charge them with prostitution/keeping house of ill fame, the Detroit Free Press reported.

Two women and a 25-year-old man were also apprehended and turned over to the U.S. Border Patrol for overstaying their visas, according to the Free Press. Five other women between the ages of 32 and 58 years old were charged with misdemeanors.

Authorities believe money raised from the prostitution ring was spent at an unidentified Detroit casino.

During the raids, authorities seized about $35K in U.S. currency, $67K in Canadian currency, 22 cellphones, a laptop, and a tablet, according to the report.

The illicit operations were shut down and authorities are continuing their investigation with the hope of finding more trafficking victims and individuals who ran the illegal ring, authorities said.

Turning Point Inc., an organization that helps victims of human trafficking, assisted the victims of the operation.

Meth Arrest

An Indiana man was arrested Sunday after he allegedly left a backpack containing illegal drugs unattended at the Bally’s Evansville.

Anthony Barron, 40, of Henderson, Ind., was charged with dealing methamphetamine (meth), according to Indiana TV station WFIE.

Inside the backpack was about 30 grams of suspected meth and five empty baggies, police revealed.

Baron told authorities he purchased the meth for $300 while he was at the gaming property.

He was booked and placed in jail. As of Sunday, no bail was set.