Fifty Million Forfeited by PokerStars Chairman in Black Friday Case

June 20, 2013

The Chairman of the Board of PokerStars, Mark Scheinberg, finally accepted and agreed to forfeit fifty million dollars related to the Black Friday Case. Scheinberg has decided to pay the amount to the United States of America as a part of the settlement procedure in the same case. The United States Department of Justice has sought the assets of all companies related to PokerStars as part of the forfeit. This includes companies like Rational Entertainment Enterprises.

According to the regulations of the forfeit, the Department of Justice is free to seize all properties, which were used in the illegal gambling businesses. Along with this, properties derived from various money laundering, bank, and wire frauds as well as schemes will also be under seize by the Department of Justice of the United States of America.

Settlement has absolutely no bearing on Full Tilt Poker deal

The above mentioned settlement has absolutely no bearing on the deal with the Department of Justice, struck by PokerStars in the year 2012. The deal was to make settlements against complaints regarding the company, and also to purchase all the assets of Full Tilt Poker. This was apparently being done for about $731 million dollars.

Scheinberg admits no wrongdoing as part of settlement procedures

It is clearly mentioned that the fifty million dollar forfeiture by Mark Scheinberg is not going to be applied to any other outstanding balance that the company owes the Department of Justice. All this is a part of the settlement mentioned in 2012. Scheinberg has also admitted to no wrongdoing, which is part of the settlement procedures and is disputing that the funds can be subject to forfeiture.

Once the entire forfeiture is completed, the United States of America will completely and finally release all properties derived from Scheinberg’s PokerStars and from Scheinberg himself. The properties will be released from all civil claims, which are regarding the complaint by the Department of Justice against PokerStars and other related companies.

A brief statement to poker fuse was released by Eric Hollreiser, the Head of Corporate Communications of Rational Group, regarding the entire settlement. The statement spoke about Scheinberg’s agreement to forfeit to the Government of the United States and contains no admission of guilt or wrongdoing by Mark Scheinberg.

Senior officers charged

PokerStars accepted the forfeiture of $731 million last July to the federal government of the United States in order to end all its legal battles with various prosecutors. In the process, three of the company’s senior officers were charged with money laundering, bank fraud, and running illegal online gambling enterprises, in 2011 April. The company was absolved of any wrongdoings by the Department of Justice in accepting online wagers from customers of the United States. PokerStars, however, wasn’t prohibited from making an entry into the legal gaming markets of the United States.

With all this going on, PokerStars Isle, a man-based parent company, appealed on the 17th of May regarding the acquisition of a casino in Atlantic City. However, the judge has ruled against the acquisition. In a recent filing in a state court of New Jersey, the Rational Group said that there were quite a lot of errors made by the job, which included misinterpretation of a time limit for completion of the deal. Hollreiser, however, denied all comments on the matters of legal filing.

Atlantic casino was to be online gaming hub

The acquisition of the casino in the Atlantic City was quite important for PokerStars. They wanted to convert the club into a hub for legal online gaming businesses in New Jersey. However, the state is hoping to launch online gaming at least by Thanksgiving. It has restricted all operations of its website only to twelve casinos in Atlantic City.

The Division of Gaming Enforcement of the state had informed the casinos that they had time only till the 30th of June to arrange online gambling deals. Gaming regulators of New Jersey will need ample time to examine the backgrounds and study the qualifications of all the companies, who will be partnering with the casinos.

Earlier in 2013, Rational Group agreed to pay about fifteen million dollars in order to acquire the Atlantic Club. This meant that PokerStars would become the first ever online gambling company to also own a United States land-based casino. Eleven million dollars had already been paid by Rational Group as part of the purchase deal.

The company claimed that this was the money which helped the Atlantic club remain open during the season of winter. PokerStars said that the one hundred and twenty days deadline should have technically started only from the day they applied for state approval. The approval was needed in order to run a casino, but the 120-day deadline stated from the sale contract’s date.