Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Internet poker boss says he broke U.S. gambling law - 21st December 2011


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One of the owners of three of the world's biggest internet poker firms pleaded guilty on Tuesday to a criminal charge of deceiving U.S. banks over the processing of gambling proceeds.

Absolute Poker co-owner Brent Beckley, 31, admitted in Manhattan federal court to conspiring to break U.S. laws against gambling on the Internet. He also pleaded guilty to a charge of conspiracy to commit bank fraud and wire fraud.

Twelve people have been charged thus far in the high profile case, including 11 in April when the U.S. government seized the Internet domain names of the three largest Internet poker companies: Absolute Poker, Full Tilt Poker and PokerStars.

Full Tilt Poker owner Raymond Bitar, PokerStars owner Isai Scheinberg and Absolute Poker owners Beckley and Scott Tom were also charged with breaking the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act and other laws.

Beckley told U.S. Magistrate Judge Ronald Ellis that at Absolute Poker between 2006 and April 2011 he accepted credit cards from players so they could bet on the Internet. He said he disguised the purpose of the payments.

"I knew it was illegal to deceive the banks in this way," Beckley told the judge.

The bank fraud charge carries a possible maximum prison sentence of 30 years, but under a plea agreement in the court record, Beckley will likely serve a much lesser term of between 12 months and 18 months.

His lawyer, Robert Cleary, declined comment.

The indictment said that between 2008 and 2011 Beckley hired so-called "payment processor" Ira Rubin to help the company avoid U.S. gambling laws. Rubin would process e-checks for Absolute Poker disguised as payroll processing, affiliate marketing and online electronics merchants, according to the indictment.

Rubin, who lived in Central America for years in his attempt to avoid a telemarketing fraud charge, is nearing close to a plea agreement, according to his legal eagle.

Prosecutors said that of the billions of dollars the poker companies tricked U.S. banks into processing, approximately one-third or more of the money went directly to the companies as revenue through the "rake" charged to players on almost every poker hand played over the internet.

The government has also filed a civil lawsuit against the Full Tilt Poker website. They accused self-styled "Poker Professor" Howard Lederer and professional poker champion Christopher Ferguson and others of paying themselves more than $440 million while defrauding other players.

The case is USA v Tzvetkoff et al, U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, No. 10-00336.

Not only are online poker and online casino players watching closely, but also online gambling companies which are interested to offer their product to the lucrative U.S market. Just a few of those firms include Bwin.Party Digital Entertainment (owner of PartyCasino.com, PartyPoker.com, World Poker Tour and others), Virgin Games and PKR.

In the meantime some land based U.S casinos are getting deals in place, with Bwin.Party recently getting a well publicised b2b agreement inked with MGM Resorts International.

Business entrepreneurs Donald Trump and Steve Wynn are just two high profile Americans who are supportive of 100% legal online gambling in the U.S. Online poker may become legal in the U.S in the coming year, followed by online casino games however... this prediction has proved wrong year after year on U.S soil, but then again - the subject matter has never been hotter, nor has the U.S government ever need a cash boost to their coffers as much as they currently do.

Some of the most popular games with online players include Cleopatra, Sinatra, Wheel of Fortune, poker, Texas Hold'Em, Blackjack, Video Poker and Roulette. Some online gambling companies offer new players a generous sign up bonus to encourage them to become money players.

In many parts of the world including Canada, Italy, Australia and New Zealand, online gambling is just as popular as gambling in traditional casinos, pubs and hotels.

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Sunday, December 18, 2011

PKR's Caribbean Stud Poker Jackpot Approaches $150,000 - 13th December 2011


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The progressive jackpot for PKR's Caribbean Stud Poker mini-game has today reached $149,000 and is expected to grow to a record size within the next few days.

The game is available directly through PKR's pioneering 3D room client, and invites poker fans to beat the dealer-s five card Texas Hold-em hand. Players can be eligible for the rapidly rising jackpot by placing a side bet of just $1, with jackpot payouts activated by hitting the highest ranked poker hands.

On 27 November, poker player GVincredible won 10% of the jackpot after hitting a straight flush, turning his $4 stake into $15,838. The Belgian, a regular at PKR's tables since July 2007 with a $1,833 tournament victory to his name, commented “I just couldn-t believe I-d won. I-d already planned to play more poker on PKR in 2012 and to buy a new car, but this makes it much easier!”
PKR's Caribbean Stud Poker mini-game forms part of the award winning operator-s suite of gaming products which includes a revolutionary 3D poker room, innovative 3D casino and sportsbook.

For more information on the Team PKR pro please visit PKR.com

About PKR

PKR.com is a revolutionary new concept in online poker that has changed the way the game is played. Featuring stunning real-time 3D graphics and a uniquely engaging and immersive gaming system, PKR.com brings an unparalleled and previously unseen level of realism to online poker. Developed by some of the brightest stars in the video games and poker industries, PKR.com continues to be the most innovative poker room in the world.

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100 PKR Players Set for BAMMA Giveaway - 1st December 2011

Next-Gen Online Poker Room PKR Offers Up Free Fight Night Hospitality

More than 100 poker players will enjoy the explosive atmosphere at the BAMMA 8 mixed martial arts event in Nottingham on 10 December through a free prize draw at PKR.com In the fourth event of its kind this year, PKR is again offering players the opportunity to meet staff and other players, against the backdrop of one of sport's fastest growing events. The prize draw is open to all PKR members and concludes on Friday 02 December.

PKR became the headline sponsor of BAMMA, Europe's premier mixed martial arts organisation, in January 2011. The online poker site has since welcomed hundreds of its members to BAMMA events in Manchester, London and Birmingham, having offered tickets in free prize draws through the site's busy forum and website.

PKR players who attend the upcoming BAMMA 8 event, which takes place in Nottingham's Capital FM Arena on Saturday 10 December, will enjoy 13 bouts featuring some of the world's top martial artists including light heavyweight champion Jimi 'Poster Boy' Manuwa, who makes his eagerly anticipated BAMMA debut. UFC legend Randy Couture is also rumoured to be making a promotional appearance.

Community Manager Dan Grant commented, "BAMMA events are a fantastic opportunity for our players to meet PKR and each other in a fun and social real-world setting. They'll get to put faces to names they've met at our online tables and meet new poker mates while enjoying the great atmosphere of a thrilling sporting event."

For more information on PKR's BAMMA 8 giveaway, please visit PKR.com

For interviews with top BAMMA fighters including UFC star Nate Marquardt and Tom 'Kong' Watson, please visit: www.pkr.tv

PKR Poker Media Man 'Online Poker Website Of The Month' Runner-Up For December 2011

PKR.com has been awarded the Media Man runner-up for 'Online Poker Website Of The Month'.

The popular online poker website has also been tipped to be a legitimate chance to place first in the coming months, should their excellent service and offerings continue.

Well done to PKR.com

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