Minnesota officials investigate TikTok gambling scheme

A phone with the TikTok logo on its screen
Image: XanderSt/Shutterstock

Minnesota officials are investigating two men regarding an alleged TikTok gambling scheme at its state casinos, according to the Minneapolis Star Tribune via the Associated Press.

The Minnesota Alcohol and Gambling Enforcement Division (AGED) is looking into allegations that two men, an Edina man and his younger brother, have been “collecting fees for playing slots on behalf of others watching TikTok.”

According to the search warrant, cash apps were used “to collect an initial $5.99 subscription fee as well as $25 for every $100 deposited for wagering,” before slots were played and live-streamed from the Mystic Lake Casino in Prior Lake and the Treasure Island Resort & Casino just outside Red Wing.

Under state law, bets can’t be placed on behalf of someone else, but no one in the investigation has been charged so far.

Videos have also been found on the TikTok page, which has 165,000 followers, showing jackpot wins at slot machines.

Nicole Roddy, a spokesperson for AGED, told the Star Tribune that the agency had never seen such a case before.

This was echoed by the American Gaming Association (AGA), whose VP for Government Relations, Alex Costello, noted that the alleged scheme “violates casinos’ anti-money laundering protocols.”

Earlier this month, the Department of Justice charged 11 people for running an illegal sports betting operation, Red44, via an online offshore server in Costa Rica.

Throughout last year, the AGA appealed for tougher action against illegal gambling, calling for all parts of the regulated gaming industry to “work together” against unregulated operators.