It appears very unlikely there will be any funds left over.
The DOJ is seeking to sell both the software and email file to the highest bidder, although the more time that passes the less any of these assets are worth. Not saying that Beckley walked away with any money, but if he did 14 months for $60 million is a pretty good ROI.
Here is their statement: “If the court approves the settlement, and if there are Blanca assets remaining after the resolution of claims by other parties, it is anticipated that the court will provide a process for players to make claims against those assets.”
Blanca is the parent company of Absolute and Ultimate Bet poker.
Well if you’re still reading articles on how to get your money back from Absolute Poker or Ultimate Bet you’ve got perseverance.
See you at your local Tribal Casino I guess.
December 2012 Update
Senator Harry Reid of Nevada, responsible for making the big push to legalize online poker has given up for the year stating the idea has lost momentum.
However, if this venture proves successful then national online poker should not be far behind.
After well over a year since the Black Friday shut down this is by far the best news to come out for players who have had bankrolls in limbo since April 2011 on both Full Tilt and Absolute.
Ultimate Bet and Absolute Poker are being forfeited to the US government.
This, however does not mean the issue is dead. The US Marshalls office will be mandated to liquidate Blancas assets. With this kind of money involved companies are lining up to get a piece of the pie along with state and federal governments who need to tax revenue such ventures would generate.
The Department Of Justice has obtained the Absolute Poker software from a Korean company as well as its email list.
Pokerstars has agreed to pay the US government $547 million dollars over the next three years.
Further muddying the water are several interests that are attempting to block the sale and claim the remaining assets as their own.
This money will be used in part to pay back US players who have an estimated $184 million dollars locked up on the former Full Tilt site.
$60 million still pales in comparison to the $350 million Full Tilt reportedly owes players.
An excerpt from the Press Release:
The proposed settlement requires all of Blancas assets to be forfeited to the United States. The press release does not hold out much hope that anything will be left after the initial business claims are settled. Their assets will be sold.
Absolute Poker and Ultimate Bet simply don’t have enough assets to liquidate to cover the massive of amount they owe former players.
South Point Poker out of Nevada is prepared to start offering online poker in October of this year.
It’s estimated that online poker would be worth $5 billion dollars per year in the United States.
Estimates show that even with the ban 10-15 million Americans are still playing on-line poker to this day, gambling billions, yet the US government isn’t seeing dime one of it.
In addition, Absolute Poker has also asked for a settlement arrangement, agreeing to forfeit Absolute’s assets in order to pay back customers.
The latest new is that the DOJ will be selling off any assets Cereus still has which would seem like good news, however they intend to pay off several companies who have filed claims before they get to players.
It’s estimated that Absolute Poker still owes $60 million to players. This has yet to be approved by the US Government.
And even if there is then earlier estimates of receiving 5 cents on the dollar seems to be the best the player’s can hope to achieve out of a settlement.
Although jailing Beckley is movement by the DOJ, it doesn’t address if or how they intend to pay back players.
7/31/2012 Lots Of Movement
Pokerstars has officially acquired Full Tilt Poker and has come to a settlement agreement with the US government.
With the government having some serious issues on it’s plate such as dealing with the destruction of Sandy, the fiscal cliff and gun rights in lieu of the Connecticut massacre, now does not seem a smart time to push something like online poker, that in comparison may seems trivial.
This will only be allowed in the state of Nevada so it will be geared towards visitors to Las Vegas who will be able to play poker from their hotel rooms or poolside on their laptops or mobile devices.
Home of the Free.
It’s just a matter now of when the timing is right to get the legislation successfully pushed through.
In addition, other first world nations such as Britain, France, Italy and even parts of Canada have legalized and regulated on-line poker successfully so it’s clear that it could and should be done in the US as well.. If the court approves the settlement, and if there are Blanca assets remaining after the resolution of the claims by other parties, it is anticipated that the court will provide a process for players to make claims against those assets. At present the Commission has no information as to how players should make such a claim.
Hopefully 2013 will be that time. One the surface this seems like a good scenario for players waiting to get paid but it appears there are other business interests first in line making claims on any assets that are left. The arguments are still strong for legalizing on-line poker, such as the ability to tax and regulate it.
Brent Beckley, the head of Absolute Poker has been sentenced to 14 months in jail.
The piece of pie that is left for any of the players with money left on the site gets smaller and smaller by the day. However, there will be no distribution of the net proceeds from the liquidation pending the resolution of claims filed by other parties who have asserted an ownership interest in Blancas assets. Sadly players will be second in line at best, left to fight over whatever scraps are left.
So basically if there is any money left over after the companies that have made claims are paid out then any remaining funds will go to the players. It will be pushed again in 2013 when the timing is perhaps better.
The one bright spot in this Black Friday fiasco was the hope that perhaps we would see legalized on-line poker in the United States by the end of the year.
While an effort was made, most notably by the State of Nevada, that push has appeared to have lost traction and it may be years before we see legalized online poker in the United States