Archive for October, 2011

Al Krux Arrested for Possessing 25 Pounds of Marijuana

Friday, October 28th, 2011

Professional poker player Al Krux and his son Adam were arrested recently on felony marijuana charges. According to Syracuse.com, the two were in possession of a combined 40 pounds of marijuana. An additional 90 marijuana plants and $5,000 in cash were found in a search of Adam Krux’s home. The street value of the drugs is estimated at $200,000.

CNYCentral.com reports that police were acting on tips from neighbors of suspicious activity at the home of Adam Krux.

Investigators had been working on the case for the past month. In a coordinated bust, they stopped Al Krux and found 25 pounds of marijuana in his car. Adam Krux was stopped in possession of 15 pounds of marijuana. Both men are being held with bail set at $20,000 each.

Al Krux has a long history in the poker world first cashing in a WSOP event in 1981. In 1994, he made the final table of the WSOP Main Event finishing 5th. Russ Hamilton was the eventual winner of that tournament. Krux won a bracelet in the 1996 WSOP in a $1,500 pot-limit hold’em event. He is perhaps best remembered for reaching the final table of the 2004 WSOP Main Event where he would bust out in 6th place for an $800,000 payday. Krux was chronicled by ESPN as a lifelong gambler and family man who wanted to win the tournament as a gift to his family for dealing with years of his unreliable income. After his bustout hand, Dan Harrington consoled Krux telling him that finishing 8th in 2004 is just as big of an accomplishment as winning it all back in the 1990s.

Krux has just 5 WSOP cashes since busting out of the 2004 Main Event, all of them relatively small.

Full Tilt Faces New Class Action Lawsuit

Thursday, October 20th, 2011

The Los Angeles Times is reporting that another class action lawsuit has been filed against Full Tilt Poker.

L.A. residents Lary Kennedy and Greg Omotoy filed the suit in California federal court and are seeking $900 million in damages. They accuse the site of fraud, unjust enrichment, “a pattern of racketeering,” “brazen money-laundering” and more. The suit names Ray Bitar, Howard Lederer, and Chris Ferguson, but also names poker celebrities like Phil Ivey and Gus Hansen as they allegedly “helped promote the website and attract players.”

This is not the first time Kennedy and Omotoy have sued Full Tilt Poker. In 2009, the duo sued the site seeking to recover $80,000 that was confiscated from them after they were accused of employing bots on the site and multi-accounting. That suit was dismissed by a U.S. District Court judge a year later.

Full Tilt is currently facing a number of other lawsuits including with the District Attorney for the Southern District of New York, a class-action lawsuit filed by poker player Todd Terry and others, a suit filed in Canadian court by a consumer advocacy group, and a suit by a software company that is accusing Full Tilt and PokerStars of pushing them out of deals to provide software support to television networks that broadcast poker.

None of these other suits are seeking anywhere close to the amount of damages as Kennedy and Omotoy’s class action suit. How this latest lawsuit will affect Full Tilt’s alleged deal with French investors Groupe Bernard Tapie remains to be seen.

Full Tilt Buyout Could Involve Equity Stakes Given to Players, Investments by Current Owners

Tuesday, October 4th, 2011

According to the Wall Street Journal, the proposed Full Tilt purchase by a group of French investors could involve giving equity stakes to players owed the most money from the site. The Journal also reports that the French investment group could be looking to current Full Tilt owners as a source of investment capital. However, no existing owners would be part of company management moving forward.

Both revelations are a sign that the French bailout will not be a squeaky clean process. Members of the poker community had hoped for an investor who would cut a check for the sum of player balances and pending DOJ fines in order to acquire the site. The deal with French investors does not appear it will be of this nature.

By offering players with large sums of money stuck on the site an equity percentage, the French investment group can lower the amount of capital they need up front. Rather than paying full sticker price for the site, it appears they are attempting to offer less up-front capital while offering equity to players with huge balances. From the perspective of these players, this is much less desirable than simply being paid back in full. Rather than getting their money up-front, these players will now be put in a position to root for the site’s success in hopes that, over time, they are able to recoup the money they had stuck on the site. This equity handout plan will first have to be approved by the DOJ.

The DOJ would also have to agree to allow current owners to invest capital in the new company. This is a potentially contentious aspect of the French investors’ proposal; the poker world may feel uneasy about flocking back to the site while knowing the same owners who crashed it the first time around stand to profit from its resurrection.

In conclusion, these latest revelations from the Wall Street Journal about the dynamics of the Full Tilt bailout make it clear that the plan is less than ideal for players hoping to recoup their balances. Additionally, it is apparent that the agreement has a long road ahead before it can be finalized.