Internet Poker Operator Admits Deceit

The New York Times on December 20, 2011 released the following:

By REUTERS

“One of the owners of a large Internet poker company pleaded guilty on Tuesday to a criminal charge of deceiving United States banks about the processing of gambling proceeds.

Brent Beckley, 31, the co-owner of Absolute Poker, admitted in Manhattan federal court that he had conspired to break United States laws against Internet gambling. He also pleaded guilty to a charge of conspiracy to commit bank fraud and wire fraud.

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

The owner of Full Tilt Poker, Raymond Bitar; the owner of PokerStars, Isai Scheinberg; and the other owner of Absolute Poker, Scott Tom, were also charged.

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

Under a plea bargain, Mr. Beckley will most likely serve 12 to 18 months.”

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