An amended complaint from the Department Of Justice reveals a lot about Howard Lederer's spending, and there's a second WCOOP title of the series for someone.
New Full Tilt charges
The case against Full Tilt owners and founders took a new turn this week when the Department Of Justice filed an amended complaint, introducing new charges against Howard Lederer and Ray Bitar. The new charges also include breach of the Travel Act which forbids the use of both interstate and international travel to assist with criminal enterprise. It had been thought that the previously quoted Illegal Gambling Businesses Act and Wire Act may have had some grey areas relating to the Full Tilt case, and citing the Travel Act as well may represent a better chance of a conviction. The amended complaint also lists in detail Howard Lederer’s expenditures which it claims are associated with criminal conduct. Between 2006 and 2011 a total of $44 million was deposited into Lederer’s personal accounts which was subsequently used to purchase property and luxury cars, some even after Black Friday in 2011. The DoJ is seeking forfeiture totalling $42.5 million of Lederer’s assets linked to illegal enterprise. Similar figures have also been quoted for Chris Ferguson ($42 million) and Ray Bitar ($40.8 million) whilst Rafe Furst has been quoted at $11.7 million.
On a more positive note regarding the Full Tilt situation, the re-launch does seem to be making progress. Poker room manager Shyam Markus has gone rather quiet after his initial announcement that he would be answering players’ questions, causing a touch of consternation in some quarters. However, it seems that everything is still on track as numerous job openings have been advertised recently. A company called Rational FT Services is advertising various jobs, claiming that it will be the provider of technology, marketing and consulting services for Full Tilt Poker, so it seems that the November launch date is still very much on.
Event 21 ($215 NLHE) saw Mr.Bittar from Brazil take down a bigger prize than any of the other 8225 entrants, although he only finished in 4th place. The deal when four handed proved to be the right move for Mr.Bittar who ended up with around $25,000 more than the eventual winner mrw8419 from Hungary.
The first $10,000 event of the series saw a star studded line take their seats for event 22 (NLHE high roller) with a massive $574,695 on offer for the winner. Bertrand “ElkY” Grospellier was amongst the first players to bust whilst Viktor “Isildur1” Blom fared little better, finishing 209th of 297. Eventual winner was Darren Elias who has had a number of near misses in big live events, but can now add a very impressive online win to his resume.
In event 23 ($700 NLHE) we once again saw the 4th place finisher take home the biggest prize due to a five way deal in which vzsole of Hungary banked $221,851. hronik81 from Russia went on to claim first for only a thousand dollars less.
Team Pokerstars pro Liv Boeree had a good run in event 24 ($215 NLHE 4 max) but busted in 10th after seeing the flopped nut straight go down to a rivered flush. The $81,015 first prize was claimed by majus26 of Austria.
A very small field of just 381 took their places for event 25 ($320 7 card stud) in which Umumba of Germany and Pokerstars pro George Danzer made decent runs at a second title of the series. It was not to be for either of them though as osten of Norway became the latest bracelet winner, collecting $22,002.
It didn’t take long before someone did achieve what Danzer and Umumba couldn’t though as in the very next event ($215 PLO 1R1A) mikal12345 added another title to go with the one he picked up in PLO8 a few days ago. As well as the $83,158 prize, mikal12345 shoots to the top of the player of the series leaderboard, where Eugene Katchalov had previously resided.