Embattled Houston Poker Room Wins Again

Written by:
Nagesh Rath
Published on:

Nuisance lawsuits against Prime Social Poker Room and Post Oak Poker Club have been dropped.

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“These nuisance lawsuits rely on criminal investigations,” Assistant County Attorney Robert Soard told the Houston Chronicle. “If we don’t have a criminal investigation to rely on, it doesn’t make sense as civil lawyers to pursue it in civil court.”

The DA's office said the county would consider refiling the civil nuisance cases after law enforcement concluded its review of criminal matters.

In May, nine men were arrested for suspected money laundering during a raid at both poker clubs.  Co-owner of Post Oak Poker Club, Daniel Kebort, was among those arrested.

“We are changing the paradigm regarding illegal gambling by moving up the criminal chain and pursuing felony money laundering and engaging in organized crime charges against owners and operators,” District Attorney Kim Ogg said in a May press release.

Since that time, the Harris County DA's office has come under fire after it was revealed that a consultant for that office scammed the Post Oak Poker Club out of $250,000 resulting in all charges being dropped.

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From Cardschat:

The conflicts of interest included a campaign fundraiser for Ogg’s office involving a former consultant who also was doing business with the poker clubs. That consultant, an attorney, and a private investigator reportedly accepted $250,000 from the club on the promise of drafting a city ordinance that would clarify the club’s legality. But city council members never received a draft of any such measure.

Ogg said was left with no option but to refer the case to the FBI. However, with money laundering charges dropped, the Houston poker clubs looked to resume business as usual.

- Nagesh Rath, Gambling911.com