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Online Poker Funds Will Remain Seized: Judge Throws Out Case

Written by:
Jagajeet Chiba
Published on:
Aug/29/2009

U.S. District Judge Jeffrey Miller in San Diego denied a bid Thursday by lawyers for the company, Account Services Inc., and the Poker Players Alliance to return the money.

On June 2, the US Attorney's Office in Manhattan seized approximately $40 million in funds belonging to Full Tilt Poker and PokerStars, the two largest online poker rooms.  Some of that money was being transferred through Account Services, Inc.

After filing a motion asking for return of the funds, the US Attorney's Office issued an indictment against Account Services owner Douglas Rennick.

Lawyers for the players contend prosecutors in the case have used questionable tactics to hold on to the money, and have avoided arguing the legality question.

Now, after Miller ruled against them, it could be years before they see any of the money, according to Greg Moran of the Union Tribune.

Account Services is one of a handful of online poker payment processors who work with Full Tilt Poker and PokerStars and had funds froze.

Costigan Media, which owns the Gambling911.com website, won a landmark decision to have seizure warrants related to the case unsealed as part of its Motion to Intervene in a New York Circuit Court.  The Honorable Judge Laura Taylor Swain agreed to redact some information contained within the seizure warrants due to an ongoing investigation, however, the US Attorney's Office is required to notify the Court in advance of any upcoming indictments that would allow for further information within those warrants to be unsealed. 

Further unsealing of court documents revealed that both Full Tilt Poker and PokerStars are mentioned as part of the ongoing investigation. 

Jagajeet Chiba, Gambling911.com         

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