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FULL TILT POKER SCANDAL

Black Friday was just a beginning of many problems to come for everyone involved with Full Tilt Poker. In this article at pokerhistory.eu we will draw a timeline of what happened with Full Tilt Poker after Black Friday on April 15th 2011 and up to now (May 2012).

Four days after Black Friday DOJ allowed Full Tilt Poker to reopen in order to pay out whatever funds their players had in their accounts.

It quickly became clear though that players were in fact not receiving their funds yet, and towards the end of April 2011 it was said that this was due to a conflict between Full Tilt Poker and their payment processors.

Full Tilt Poker continued to pledge throughout May 2011 that players would receive their funds, but on May 31st a statement was released from Full Tilt Poker that made players even more worried. They admitted to not having a specific timeframe for processing withdrawals, that they had “short-term problems”, and that capital was now being raised in order to pay back US players.1

On June 1st news of Phil Ivey suing Tiltware for $150 million goes online, a lawsuit which is dropped one month later on July 1st. Just a few days prior to Ivey dropping his lawsuit, on June 29th, Full Tilt Poker gets their gaming license from The Alderney Gambling Control Commission (AGCC) suspended and FulltiltPoker.com is shut down world wide. On July 4th Full Tilt Poker also gets their French license suspended and players continue to rage.

On July 10th Full Tilt Poker goes into negotiations with an European investor with the aim of solving the financial problems, and in a statement on August 31st Fullt Tilt claims to have had discussions with six different investors. In the same statement one could also read where a lot of the missing money allegedly had gone, as Full Tilt Poker claims US Government had seized $115 million after Black Friday and that payment processors had stolen $42 million before Black Friday.

A long delayed meeting between Full Tilt Poker and AGCC finally takes place on September 19th, but instead of discussing how player funds are to be returned, it is uncovered that the owners of Full Tilt Poker have potentially defrauded players out of $300 million. The DOJ amends the original civil complaint and adds Full Tilt Poker stakeholders Howard Lederer, Chris Ferguson, and Rafe Furst as defendants. The online poker community calls it a “global ponzi scheme” and the scandal reaches another high as poker players world wide lash out against these poker celebrities. On September 29th Full Tilt Poker has their already suspended license with AGCC officially revoked, but by no means would this be the end of the Full Tilt Poker scandal.

Shortly after having their license revoked, a deal between Full Tilt Poker and French Bernard Tapie Group (BTG) seems close to be finalized. This impression is enhanced when BTG and the DOJ come to terms in the beginning of November, and furthermore when GBT and Full Tilt agrees on terms in the middle of December. In order for the deal to go through all three parties had to come to terms, as GBT was supposed to buy the Full Tilt assets from the DOJ so that the planning of the player payback could continue.

The last we have have seen of the Full Tilt Poker scandal was on April 24th 2012 when it became known that the deal between BTG, the DOJ and Full Tilt Poker fell through. On the same day PokerStars released a statement on their website about rumors of being interested in purchasing Full Tilt Poker:  

“As you know, PokerStars is in settlement discussions with the U.S. Department of Justice. As such settlement discussions are always confidential, we are unable to comment on rumors. As soon as we have information to share publicly we will do so.”


General source: PokerSitesShutdown.com

General source: HighStakesReport.com

1 Highstakesdb.com