There’s an old saying, “If you ain’t cheating, you ain’t trying,” so maybe I have to give Brazilian poker pro Rafael Caiaffa some credit for trying. But I probably won’t. This week, Caiaffa was banned from the Latin American Poker Tour’s (LAPT) BSOP Millions for trying to sneak chips onto his stack that were not his to use.

In the R$5,000 Mystery Knockout event, some late-registering players were accidentally given two stacks of 100,000 chips: one from a floorperson after signing up and one from the dealer after finding their seat. Everyone else notified the powers-that-be that they received extra chips, as honest people would do, but not Caiaffa.

Caiaffa decided to stash the extra stack in his pocket, possibly with a plan in mind, possibly just waiting to see if an opportunity presented itself. That opportunity arose when he had just 10,000 chips left and was moved to another table. En route, he added the extra chips to his stack and voila, there he was with more than he started with.

Fortunately, fellow player Eduardo Silva noticed that Caiaffa had a suspiciously solid chip stack and notified tournament officials. Staff reviewed security footage and confirmed that Caiaffa had, in fact, combined his legitimate chips with the extra ones. He was disqualified from the tournament and banned from the rest of the poker festival.

In a statement to Portuguese-language site MundoPoker, BSOP Tournament Director Devanir Campos said that the situation will be further evaluated and officials will decide if Caiaffa’s ban will be extended, possibly permanently.

They say that doing the right thing is often difficult, but in this case, it would have been incredibly easy. Caiaffa was given an extra stack of chips – all he had to do was say, “Whoops, I already have a stack, you can have this one back.” Heck, it was harder for me to go back into Target after I had already gotten to my car when I realized I forgot to ring up a bottle of marinade at the self-checkout (note: it was not difficult at all). I had to walk back into the store from the parking lot – Caiaffa only had to decline the extra stack. But hey, why do the easy and right thing when you can do the wrong thing?

I have always found it interesting that cheating at gambling is so commonplace and people often cheer on those who try to cheat the casino. I kind of get it – the casinos make tons of money, often off of people who have gambling problems, so to see someone bilk the casino can feel like justice to some. But even if one thinks that’s ok (which it isn’t), Caiaffa was cheating the other players. I would hope it will be a while before anyone welcomes him back to a tournament.

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