Poker Articles

When Poker Skirts the Law…


One of the most respected names in professional poker, Canadian ace Daniel Negreanu, has lambasted the actions of a group which had to terminate the contracts of Joe Sebok and Prahlad Friedman, thanks to controversy surrounding the website’s dealings.

“I mean that company is just an absolute joke!” blasted Negreanu in his May 7th blog post on “The owners (not past owners, same darn owners) cheated their customers, stole from their investors and it looks like the last straw is that they will likely fold up like a cheap suit and run off with the rest of their customer’s money. Shame on them.”

“As a community we should have zero tolerance for cheaters, for liars or for companies that take advantage of us.”

Another professional player, Isaac Haxton, recently stated that he had $300,000 US dollars tied up with the company and was willing to sell it for 20 cents in the dollar but as Negreanu observed:

“Maybe I’d throw him $35 in the hopes of a miracle, but I certainly wouldn’t give him $10,000. I feel bad for anyone who has their money tied up there, because the prospects of ever seeing a dime of it are very slim.”

The story comes on the back of what American poker players have termed ‘Black Friday’. On April 15th 2011, the US Department of Justice unsealed an indictment against three of the largest American-based online poker companies.

The effect of the ruling, which accused these companies of money laundering, meant that millions of American players found that they could no longer play the game online as the domain names were seized by the FBI.

As a result, the companies named in the indictment have set up new sites with new domain names. Though at present, no new players from the US are being allowed to join and only one site is still offering games where money can be won and lost, though no deposits or withdrawals are allowed to be made to the site.

Fortunately, here in the UK, gambling laws regarding Internet poker, casino games and betting in all its forms tend to be a lot more stringent. The top companies in the UK offer their customers wide scale measures to prevent against fraud, both against the individual customer and the company itself.

Many of the top names in the industry, such as Ladbrokes, have built up a reputation over decades that ensures that such an occurrence as Black Friday, will not hit the UK poker market.

The message is simple, poker players of all abilities and experience should remain vigilant about which sites they play on. Register with a reputable site to enjoy your game and you can be sure that your money, and your site, is completely safe and secure.