ATTAN U. S. ATTORNEY CHARGES PRINCIPALS OF THREE LARGEST INTERNET POKER COMPANIES WITH BANK FRAUD, ILLEGAL GAMBLING OFFENSES AND LAUNDERING BILLIONS IN ILLEGAL GAMBLING PROCEEDS.
On Friday, the founds of online poker's "Big Three" was indicted by federal authorities. The founders of PokerStars, Full Tilt Poker and Absolute Poker were indicted on charges of bank fraud, money laundering and illegal gambling. In addition more than 75 bank accounts used by the online poker companies (and payment processors) and 5 domain names was seized (restraining oders issued).
The allegations revolves around the companies trying to circumvent federal laws by tricking U. S. banks into processing payments after UIGEA was passed.
As of now both PokerStars & Full Tilt Poker has shut down real money play for U. S. Players. Players from other countries can however play as normal. PokerStars.com now redirects to PokerStars.eu.
PokerStars has issued the following statement (via pop-up in client):
"As you may have heard, we have had to suspend real money poker services to people based in the US due to legal developments there. The developments are confined to the US and do not have any impact on your ability to continue using our services. Please be assured player balances are safe. There is no cause for concern. For all customers outside the US it is business as usual."
"The PokerStars website has been moved to www.pokerstars.eu and our support e-mail address is now email@example.com. We apologize to our players for any inconvenience caused by this disruption. Please be aware that we are currently experiencing a very high volume of e-mails, so response times are delayed. We will answer player e-mails as soon as possible. Thank you for your patience and understanding in this matter."
Full Tilt Poker wrote in parts of their statement:
"Unfortunately, as a result of this action, Full Tilt Poker has decided that it must suspend "real money" play in the United States until this case is resolved. However, Full Tilt Poker will continue to provide peer-to-peer online poker services outside of the United States."
We at BRM will try and keep you updated during the day as events unfold.
Moneybookers NOT affected (UPDATED 16/4-2011 17.31 GMT):
Official statement from MoneyBookers stated the following:
"Moneybookers is not part of this investigation and have not been approached by any authority. As a general principle we never process transactions for online gambling purposes including poker for US citizens."
Onyx Cup - cancelled (UPDATED 16/4-2011 19.19 GMT):
According to Poker News a spokesperson from Full Tilt Poker has confirmed, that in light of recent events, the Onyx Cup poker series has been cancelled.
See this is the whole problem. The US gov is desperate for cash. Online poker is revenue they need to fuel their war machine. Get used to it, this is just the beginning. After all, the US gov still claims that they OWN the internet.
I'm so sick of this fucking country, united states, i work my ass off and they tax me i lose my job and they dont help me they tax the money i put into the poker sites and they wanna tax again? this is fking bullshit, i dont ask for a handout i make money playing poker online and cuz some stupid fuckheads screw up the budget they have to tax the poker sites and claim gambling is bad, really? i can go to pechanga and lose all my money or lose it all in any cardroom in L.A. or go to vegas this is a fucking sham and i am sick of paying taxes just to get fucked like this, i am so fucking done i thought the government is there to serve the people, bullshit! this is a dictatorship and our government is nothing more than thugs and thieves im done following the law or paying taxes they can all go fuck themselves, thanx for stealing my dream obama!
hm bad news but i see her a big winner how can say business as usual is partypoker they sure dont have problems with cash out or cash in and for the us player wat can i say just sorry guys thats al your guilt with your stupid money hungry politicians
We all knew it was going to happen sooner or later, I feel sorry for those in the US, told every day in every speach in every movie and by all govenores etc etc about the american dream, lady took a big fall today. $3 billion is all they ask for...
BTW im going to be playing lots of tourns in the next few days, lots of overlays ATM.
it makes me question the integrity of full pokerstars.....what would stop them from fraudulent acts toward depositors????? many times i had that feeling of stealing like that casino sites gen PKR were on the roulette u can se clearly the steal
Some of us have a life sorry for not being up to date this is shocking! what about everybody founds how will we recover them full tilt was the only site i liked to play so i am truly devastated about this will it be taken over or is this the end for fulltilt as we know it
Posted by fulltilt130: Some of us have a life sorry for not being up to date this is shocking! what about everybody founds how will we recover them full tilt was the only site i liked to play so i am truly devastated about this will it be taken over or is this the end for fulltilt as we know it
Yes! The mighty U.S. where freedom is B.S. I've worked and paid taxes since I was 12 years old starting with a paper route and have worked all these years and paid for what freedom. Freedom for the U.S. to tell me what I can do or can't do. No real freedom here. When I can't play poker without the governments approval then we all know what the word freedom is in the U.S. It's a line of B.S. in which I'm sick of. The U.S. intervenes in every countries business and wants to dictate how the world should be ran. Up yours U.S.! Tired of your definition of freedom.
@Greenmohave not just the US but mainly, feel free to come over to the UK and live under our democratic dictatorship Australia are pretty much the same too...mahhh at least we rule the world I guess...Ohh how do you say "im sorry please forgive us" in Chinese...never mind im sure my grankids will teach me...
Posted by Greenmohave: Yes! The mighty U.S. where freedom is B.S. I've worked and paid taxes since I was 12 years old starting with a paper route and have worked all these years and paid for what freedom. Freedom for the U.S. to tell me what I can do or can't do. No real freedom here. When I can't play poker without the governments approval then we all know what the word freedom is in the U.S. It's a line of B.S. in which I'm sick of. The U.S. intervenes in every countries business and wants to dictate how the world should be ran. Up yours U.S.! Tired of your definition of freedom.
I feel very sorry about American poker players but the situation is extremely bad for online players in all countries. The panic is spreading and many non-American players are cashing out of FT and PS to be on the safe side. If the sites will not cope with coming wave of cashouts they might become history. The next couple of weeks will be crucial for these poker rooms. I decided not to cash out in haste and appeal that you do the same.
To be honest, it was allways going to happen, FT and PS gave the US law the big "vs" your govenment could not take that, I did not see them doing it to outher govenments such as the french, no they obayed thier laws and went about setting up a site for them to play on, the US had to act on this crime, yep its a crime, poker has not been made illigal for you to play just regulations put in place. Im actually thinking FT and PS deserve what they are getting, they are greedy and belived they were above the laws.... If I dont like a law for what ever reason, I can not just do what i please, they took a gamble and they lost....heres a song about it...
I heard the news first time in the morning. First thing that i did was to check my pokerstars and full tilt poker accounts. There was an software update on both sites that worked out fine and after the installation was complete i was able to acces my account son both poker sites. Once i was in nothing bad happend, i mean all my money were there, i could even withdraw, so all was good. After that i opened a few tables and to my surprise there were actually some us players on the tables, not cash tables but tournaments on full tilt poker. I didn't saw any us player on pokerstars though. I understand now there aren't any us players on full tilt poker either. This situation sucks big time, i hope you can get your money back.
Its in all portuguese tabloids, when i saw it this morning i couldnt believe the names of the poker rooms i was reading, once they are the ones with most credibility among online players. Perhaps this has nothing to do with Pokerstars owners and only involves people who used they acounts to make transfers of huge amounts of money, with excuse of being playing poker.
BASICALLY THE US GOVERNMENT SUCKS!!! IM A US CITIZEN AND I THINK THIS IS A COMPLETE POWER MOVE ON THEIR PART. SAD TO THINK THAT THEY CAN TELL US WHAT WE CAN DO WITH OUR OWN MONEY. WHATS NEXT...ARE THEY GOING TO TELL US WHICH TOILET PAPER TO WIPE OUR ASS WITH!!!