Former Full Tilt Poker employer Ray Bitar has pled guilty couple of years after the Ebony Friday indictments were filed against the online operator, because well as against PokerStars and Absolute Poker. As result, Bitar has been sentenced to time served.
As such, Bitar will serve no further jail time because of their current heart condition which, as stated by his attorney John F. Baughman, gives him only a 50 percent chance of surviving to see 2014, unless they can be given a heart transplant.
No Jail Time
Bitar pled guilty to costs of wire fraud and violating the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act, but U.S. District Judge Loretta Preska described his physical state as the ‘driving factor’ behind the lack of further jail time, admitting that the federal prison system was unable to handle Bitar’s medical needs. Basically, a jail sentence would have been of the same quality as a death sentence to Bitar, who originally encountered up to 35 years in prison.
Forfeiture of All Full Tilt Profits
The former CEO was additionally bought to forfeit $40 million in cash, home and other assets that have been purchased with profits from complete Tilt Poker’s activities, that has been determined to be near Bitar’s total profits during his time operating the show.
Appearing in Manhattan court that is federal video clip link from his medical treatment facility in California, Bitar told Preska that he regretted his actions and ended up being ‘sorry for the issues that Full Tilt Poker got into’, adding that ‘it never need happened’.
Black Friday Fallout
During the months leading up to Black Friday, the decision-makers of Full Tilt Poker proceeded crediting player records with deposits, as well as paying board members $10 million each month, despite the failure to acquire those funds from U.S. financial institutions as the authorities had cut off online poker payment processing streams.
As a result, Comprehensive Tilt Poker’s books saw a nine-figure shortfall, which ultimately led to the downfall associated with the operator right after the indictments of Black Friday. Nonetheless, included in funds of its very own Ebony Friday civil charges, the company had been acquired by PokerStars, who agreed to offer funding to payout to its former players.
Following Bitar’s sentencing, simply three of the 11 people indicted on Black Friday are yet to strike handles U.S. prosecutors. These include founder of PokerStars, Isai Scheinberg, and the company’s former payments director Paul Tate, since well as Scott Tom, co-founder of Ultimate Bet.
The indictments of Black Friday have been long and drawn out as is usually the case with legal affairs. However, as sentencing continues, it seems those behind the illegal activities are slowly but surely receiving their just desserts.
Alleged Russian Mafia Kingpin Indicted by DoJ for New York Illegal Gambling Op
What now ? for an encore once you have been indicted for bribing Olympic figure skating judges? Obviously, you can get indicted for running illegal poker and sports betting operations. Think of it as a kind of Russian Mafia spirit that is entrepreneurial always looking for the next big part of illegal activities.
Such is the scenario for (are we really going to form this more often than once?) Alimzhan ‘Taiwanchik’ Tokhtakhounov (phew), one of 34 friendly Russkies who got to meet face-to-face using the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of brand New York this week on charges of racketeering, money laundering, extortion, and operating an unlawful sports betting outfit, all topped down with some Unlawful Web Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA) and Wire Act violations. Or, as these dudes want to call it, a day that is honest work.
DoJ Makes Bank
We might have discovered a way that is good fix the budget deficit; between Full Tilt’s Ray Bitar having to fork over $40 million in cash and assets, and now this dude (no, we are perhaps not typing his name once more) and 34 of their friendly cohorts being asked to forfeit at least $50 million, we ought to be on route to economic data recovery in no time flat.
Money Laundered, Courtesy of JPMorgan Chase
Here’s where the story gets pretty interesting though; because it might be another run-of-the-mill illegal credit wagering business (this one was operating since 2006) which was set up for benefit of Russia’s most well-heeled ex-pats round the world. This Russian version of the mob loansharking business was able to move said $50 million in profits from their sports betting ops with the help of the probably not-too-bright JPMorgan Chase bank branch manager (whoever career in banking seems to be on a downswing now), as well as a few shell companies in Cyprus while the U.S.
Surprisingly, cough, it’s reported that this business were proven to exert some pressure when bettors were a little late with their re payments. Probably by having a mallet on some knuckles or kneecaps, we’re betting. If we owed money to the Russian mob, you can bet we would get hungry before we’d be missing a payment due.
Others Indicted Also
This tale gets so complex, you require a roadmap to follow it; but we’ll make an effort to provide the Cliff’s Notes version here. Hillel ‘Helly’ Nahmad, who was managing a fancy shmancy Manhattan art gallery inside the equally chic resort Carlyle, is also accused of ignoring UIGEA and running some sports wagers from his wealthy clientele through on line gambling web sites, which everybody knows is just a DoJ no-no; sheesh. Along with Nicholas Hirsch, Nahmad is also accused of fraud for saying an item of art had been worth $300K when it was really worth bupkes. Then there’s Abe Mosseri, whom took straight down a global world variety of Poker bracelet last year, and Molly Bloom, who’s run high-stakes poker games for Hollywood royalty like Leonardo DiCaprio and Matt Damon (of Rounders fame) in the past.
Health Bureau Smoking Mad Over Noncompliance with Macau Smoking Ban
Macau’s revenue numbers for 2013 have lit up, nevertheless now the Administrative that is special District wellness Bureau has smoke appearing out of their ears: as it happens that 64% of the area’s gambling enterprises may not maintain compliance with a no smoking cigarettes edict that ended up being expected to enter effect as of the very first of the year. In country notorious for the quantity of per capita cigarette smokers, as it happens it isn’t easy going smoke-free.
Air Quality Sub-Par
The revelations stick to the ongoing health Bureau’s current quality of air evaluations of the smoking areas in 2 out of three associated with the casino and slot parlors tested as below satisfactory levels. Yes, that right is read by you: they tested the smoking areas and were surprised to get -say what, now? smoke levels that were somewhat high. Don’t worry, we’re scraping our heads right along with you on this one.
Were the nonsmoking areas likely to lighten the stinky air in the smoky areas? Is there any science taking part in a supposition like that? Again, we still never realize the point of testing smoky air for, of most things, smoke. Simply amazing.
Wellness Bureau Evaluates
Okay, they did additionally grab some air samples off the mass gaming floors and the ventilation systems. What a surprise! Smoke particles had been discovered (thus the term ‘second-hand smoke,’ all you champions of the cancer tumors sticks); in reality, out of 44 casinos and slot parlors tested, 28 were found accountable of maybe not complying with at least one of six reference air quality requirements laid out in the smoking ban that is partial.
We feel this is a good time and energy to point that a ‘partial’ smoking cigarettes ban is like being ‘somewhat’ pregnant; you have to select your camp. Smoke, in case you missed this play royal vegas in science class, moves and fills the air. Hello, do we are in need of to explain everything?
Shape Up or Pay Up
To not be trifled with, Macau’s Secretary for Economy and Finance (you see the smoking cigarettes synergy, right?) Francis Tam Pak Yuen has told the offending casinos to take the appropriate corrective measures to meet with the minimum quality of air criteria, or prepare to pony up some of their rather healthy profits to the state.
He then softened his words a tad by saying the approach right now could be a collaborative, ‘step-by-step’ one, which can be some of those things government officials say whenever they don’t want to tick off their constituents in excess.
Taiwan to Gamble on New Casino Zones
The quaintest is had by the chinese names for things; exactly what we call ‘commercial areas,’ they call ‘free financial pilot zones.’ It’s almost like the old regimes are still around, whispering in someone’s ear; it all sounds so very formal in tone. But there is absolutely nothing formal about where Taiwan is headed now, as they lean further and further towards allowing something as grossly Western as, gasp, casinos.
It’s going to require a big change to get there though, including revamping the old Criminal Code, which currently strictly prohibits any casino development inside Taiwan. Nevertheless the times they have been a’changing, and New Taipei City’s mayor is currently embracing the concept associated with Free Economic Pilot Zones, and excited that one of the first is anticipated to land in his city, where he hopes to eventually see a sort of Las Vegas East unfurl.
Zones Will Allow for Gambling Enterprises
The Zones would allow for a courageous new world, where in actuality the evils associated with the West, like gambling, development, and tax breaks for casino developers and patrons would occur, all making old-timers turn in their graves, no doubt.
Yes, one of many first things Taiwanese legislators came together on was an agreement to waive taxes on casino winnings for the minimum of 20 years after the very first casinos open; noises like they want to be among the very first patrons. Maybe Not everyone saw eye-to-eye on that; the Ministry of Finance naturally desired their pound of flesh and had expected for the 20% winnings taxation, but he was shot down by the Ministry of Transportation and Communications, aswell as the good old American Chamber of Commerce in Taipei, who both said, ‘Not how it’s done within the Western world, buddy,’ adding so it wouldn’t be a compelling attempting to sell point for prospective investors. In this character, Taiwanese lawmakers consented to impose merely a 13% gross video gaming revenue taxation for their gambling operators.
Matsu Might Get Weidner
Meanwhile, over on the Matsu Islands, the Taiwanese Cabinet is creating legislation to allow casinos to come within, as well. Although Weidner Resorts appears to be perched for the #1 take-off position once casinos are allowed, the company’s CEO William Weidner has been none too pleased with what apparently is not a significant Western-friendly approach that is enough his liking. Weidner has criticized the government to be slow and plodding, and states he can look somewhere else if there’s no bit more speed that is chop-chop.