$5.9million Lawsuit Claims Gambling Site Skillz Cheated Highstakes Players

Two highstakes online game players have launched a lawsuit against gambling site Skillz, claiming that the site refused to pay out massive prizes and also failed to repay more than $1.5million lost to cheats.

By: Andrew Burnett


Mac Verstandig, the lawyer representing dozens of poker players in the Mike Postle cheating scandal, filed the suit on behalf of Alyssa Ball and John Prignano.

19-year old Ball, from Nevada, claims that she lost $650,000 playing the game Blitz21 – described as ‘a fun and quirky twist on blackjack and solitaire’ - to a cheater known as ‘John Doe’ (a common term used in early stages of legal actions). Having previously notified Skillz of the cheat, Ball says the only action taken was a warning for the player – his account reopened, after which he took Ball for the massive sum.

What followed was a bizarre turn of events, Skillz suspending Ball’s account.

When she tracked down Skillz CEO, Andrew Paradise, on Instagram to take matters further, she was met with a creepy response.

Paradise is alleged to have written back: “Have we met somewhere? I feel like I’d remember as you’re too beautiful to be forgettable. Haha and if we haven’t met, we should, I’m in Vegas all the time.”

When his sleazy chat-up was rebuffed, including asking the 19-year old if she ‘liked older guys’, Paradise apparently told Ball she was: “part of a ring of known cheating/fraud people.”

Her account was then terminated and her $28,000 balance seized.

The second victim of the shady site, Texan John Prignano, claims he had gained enough reward points for a Porsche Boxster (the 2020 version of which has a basic price tag of $60k).

When he tried to claim it, however, he was firstly told he needed more points – the company raising the bar without notifying players - and then had his account balance of $286,000 seized.

To rub salt into the wounds, Prignano was also accused of being a cheat and banned from the site, despite losing an estimated $950,000 to the same cheat as Ball, and a further $350k to two other cheaters, John Doe 2 and 3 in the lawsuit.

According to reports, the two plaintiffs are demanding a jury trial and seeking $5.9million in damages, with Consumer Fraud, Fraud and Unjust Enrichment among the 9 counts listed in the legal filing.

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