Borgata Cancels Winter Poker Open Event Due to Fake Chips

Written by:
Patrick Flanigan
Published on:
Borgata Cancels Borgata Winter Poker Open Event Due to Fake Chips

New Jersey state gaming regulators found that one or more entrants participating in a $2 Million Guaranteed Borgata Winter Poker Open event used a significant number of counterfeit chips.

The Borgata Winter Poker Open is among the most highly anticipated tournaments on US soil.

No charges have been filed in the case.

The event under scrutiny is the tournament's Big Stack, No Limit Hold 'Em event. It began on Tuesday and had a $560 buy-in. There were 27 people remaining in the contest when play was suspended.

Joe Lupo, the casino's senior vice president, said concerns arose during play Thursday night. The tournament was scheduled to resume at noon on Friday, but he said it was suspended before that could happen. He would not say what raised concerns about the integrity of the game, saying it was part of the ongoing investigation.

"Thus far, investigators have found that one or more tournament entrants improperly introduced a significant number of counterfeit chips into the tournament, gaining an unfair advantage and compromising the integrity of play for the event," Tom Ballance, the Borgata's president and chief operating officer said Saturday.

"It is extremely unfortunate that the criminal actions of these individuals can have a detrimental impact on more than 4,000 other entrants," he said. "We fully understand and regret the disappointment this cancellation causes our valued customers, and we will work diligently with DGE investigators to resolve the situation as quickly as possible. The integrity of our games and the confidence of our players is of the utmost importance to us."

All other chips have been thoroughly examined and will be used in the remainder of the 18-day tournament.

It was not immediately clear how players would be reimbursed for taking part in the tainted event.

- Patrick Flanagan,