The World’s Most Notorious Slot Cheat

Millions of dollars are lost to scammers looking to cheat the system and get rich quick at Las Vegas casinos annually, but few have been as successful as Dennis Nikrasch. Using sophisticated methods to rig slot machines, Nikrasch and his cohorts managed to cheat some of Vegas’ most renowned casinos out of a speculated $16 million dollars in...

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The Thanksgiving Killer

Thanksgiving Day 2009 began just like most of ours for Paul Merhige and his family. Sixteen family and friends of theirs had gathered at his cousin’s upscale home in Jupiter, FL.  The family laughed and told stories, his cousin’s daughter – 6yr old Makayla Sutton, performed songs from an upcoming school recital, and enjoyed their meal...

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Marty Frankel’s Decade of Fraud

Fast talking and eccentric financier Martin Frankel may have been responsible for one of the strangest Ponzi schemes in recent history, but he was hardly the most intelligent fraudster; in fact, he wasn’t even a financier. How did this man, with his Woody Allen mannerisms, that failed out of college, and lived at his parents’ home well into...

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Sword and Scale Episode 30

The story of Herman Webster Mudgett, otherwise known as H.H. Holmes, has been told numerous times: a brilliant man with so much potential but so inherently evil that his actions would require new words be created to describe the monster that he was. The depravity of someone who would construct a building solely for the purpose of torture, murder,...

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The Most Outrageous Celebrity Extortion Scandals

Having fame and fortune could be a fabulous life for some, but it often comes at a price. Paparazzi, crazed fans, and greedy strangers are always waiting to strike whenever the opportunity to exploit the rich and famous arises. While nude photos and secret love children seem almost commonplace now in celebrity news, some cases seem almost too...

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Real Life Vampires

Vampire mythos and legends have been around for centuries. From Bram Stoker’s famed Dracula to the more recent hit movie and novel series Twilight, vampires have long resonated with the public. Often portrayed as ruthless killers, but at the same time seductive and tortured souls that are forced to walk the Earth for an eternity, hiding in the...

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Sword and Scale Episode 29

The term "bluebeard" conveys images of pirates sailing the high seas, but the actual meaning of this term is much darker and there are examples of it all around us. You see, a "bluebeard" is a man that murders his wife. The term is derived from a French folktale dating back to the 1600's, making this horrible idea not a new one. The fact that...

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Strangest Final Meal Requests

It is customary for inmates to be provided with a last meal request preceding their execution. The tradition began in Europe as a sort of peace offering between the inmate, the judge, and executioner. It is symbolic of the accused being forgiven for their past, and superstitiously believed to prevent the executed inmate’s ghost from returning to...

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Murder Incorporated

Murder is nothing new. Most murderers are amateurs while some, such as hitmen, are professionals. What you very seldom find is a group of hitmen, a dedicated gang of killers selling murder-for-hire as the enforcement arm of a national crime syndicate. ‘Murder Incorporated’ was exactly that. Within the underworld there was nothing like them...

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Sword and Scale Episode 28

Everyone thought Joshua Gouker was a dangerous criminal. It was easy to convict him of murdering his 14-year-old step son Trey Zwicker, especially after he suddenly changed his plea to guilty and confessed. But why would a hardened criminal mastermind, who had several friends and family members at his command and lying for him, suddenly confess at...

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About Sword and Scale

Sword and Scale covers the underworld of criminal activity and the demented minds that perform the most despicable and unthinkable actions.

The Sword and Scale Podcast debuted in 2013 and is available on iTunes. Get to know more about Sword and Scale at our About Us page.

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