Archive for December, 2011

Four Arrested in Duhamel Home Invasion Case, Bracelet Still Missing

Friday, December 30th, 2011

Last week, the Montreal home of 2010 WSOP Main Event Champion Jonathan Duhamel was invaded by robbers who made off with his WSOP bracelet, a black Rolex watch, and an unspecified sum of €500 bills. TSN has reported that four arrests have been made in connection with the case.

According to police, one of the people arrested was a former female acquaintance of Duhamel’s. The woman was charged with conspiracy among other offenses.

Police have thus far been unable to recover Duhamel’s WSOP bracelet. The former champion has offered a sum of $10,000 for information or the return of the prized possession.

Jonathan Duhamel WSOP Bracelet Stolen in Home Robbery

Thursday, December 22nd, 2011

2010 World Champion Jonathan Duhamel was recently assaulted in a home invasion in which the assailants made away with his Main Event bracelet among other items. According to the Winnipeg Free Press, Duhamel was treated for minor injuries in a hospital following an invasion of his Montreal home by two men. He has since been released.

The men made their way into Duhamel’s home by ringing the doorbell and forcing their way in when it was opened. In addition to his WSOP Main Event bracelet, the robbers also escaped with a black Rolex watch and an undetermined number of €500 bills. Police in the area are telling residents to be on the lookout for bills of that denomination as they are rare.

Last November, 2008 World Champion Peter Eastgate sold his WSOP bracelet for $147,500. That bracelet, which presumably is very similar to Duhamel’s, was valued by a jeweler as being worth just $16,000. One would imagine that the men who robbed Duhamel will have a hard time selling the WSOP bracelet on the open market for any significant sum without risking being caught.

Full Tilt and GBT Deal Solidified

Thursday, December 15th, 2011

After weeks of silence, it now appears the Full Tilt Poker bailout buyout by Groupe Bernard Tapie (GBT) is all but complete. Subject: Poker reported today that the two sides completed an agreement that will send Full Tilt’s assets to the French investment firm.

The next step will involve Full Tilt forfeiting their assets to the U.S. Department of Justice from whom GBT will buy them for an already agreed upon price of $80 million. Following this transaction, GBT assumes responsibility for the money owed to non-U.S. players. As part of the deal, the DOJ will drop civil complaints against Full Tilt and will also be responsible for the ~$150 million liability to U.S. players.

This long process is not yet completed, but it does appear that, barring any unforeseen setbacks, Full Tilt players worldwide will be repaid in full which is certainly great news for the poker economy.

McManus Poker Article Featured at Grantland

Monday, December 12th, 2011

James McManus, author of Positively Fifth Street, recently had an article titled Full Tilt Boogie: UIGEA and You featured on the sports columnists site Grantland. The article is a long, comprehensive look at online poker’s struggles in the U.S. from the time of the UIGEA to the present day concerns about the value of Full Tilt money. It’s one of the best rundowns of the state of online poker in the U.S. and is definitely worth a read.

Have a look.

Bodog Anonymous Tables Not So Anonymous

Wednesday, December 7th, 2011

The online gaming company Bodog recently launched new “anonymous” tables on their poker client. The concept is pretty cool in theory: games where your opponents are unidentifiable and referred to only by their seat number at the table. The idea is aimed at circumventing data mining and player notes to create a truly anonymous online poker experience.

However, the guys at hhSmithy.com have demonstrated the tables to be less than anonymous. Have a look at the video below to see how they’re able to use a piece of simple software to exploit a leak in Bodog’s server security.

Bodog’s response to hhSmithy.com’s concerns was to say:

Your money is and has always been safe at Bodog. If you are concerned about the security of your account, having access to an account number is similar to having a screenname before our latest update.

Translation: *yawwwwn* “we don’t really care.”

A hat-tip to the guys at hhSmithy.com for pointing out this concerning online poker software vulnerability. As they pointed out, the site’s software makes it easy to compile a list of user IDs and then try a bunch of standard passwords on all of them to see if you can hack into any of the accounts. This is just another example for why online poker rooms need to subject their product to independent analysis to ensure the integrity of their games.

Personal Info Leaked from All UB Accounts

Friday, December 2nd, 2011

Subject: Poker is reporting that large amounts of personal information have been leaked from the online poker room UB (formerly known as Ultimate Bet). The data leak includes full names, email addresses, and mailing addresses of all players who have an account with the poker room.

A link to the leaked data was posted on the TwoPlusTwo.com forums and removed eight minutes later. Subject: Poker confirmed the accuracy of the data for known individuals. It is unclear why the information was leaked or who leaked it.

UB has been basically defunct since the U.S. government seized their domains on April 15th of this year. As of June, owners of the site had only about 10% of player balances on hand. As of October, the company planned to liquidate itself and distribute proceeds to players. No further word has been heard from them since then.

Black Friday Defendants Make First Court Appearance

Friday, December 2nd, 2011

The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) began to test their case against online poker in court today. In a report from Forbes, day one seems to have been smooth-sailing for the government.

A hearing was held to determine whether to grant the motion for dismissal of the indictments made by John Campos and Chad Elie. Campos and Elie, both having acted as payment processors, were two of the eleven men listed in the government’s Black Friday indictments. Their lawyer argued, among other things, that the UIGEA exempts financial transaction providers from criminal liability. Lewis Kaplan, the federal judge presiding over the case, said he did not agree that financial service providers are exempt from the law and added, “this is only the beginning of my problems with your argument.”

The Forbes article states that Judge Kaplan did not fire any tough questions at the U.S. Attorney, Arlo Devlin-Brown, and at one point even him off during an explanation of the UIGEA saying, “the whole point of the statue was to wipe out Internet gambling in the U.S.”

Campos and Elie now face trial set to begin in March. Another payment processor indicted along with Campos and Elie, Ira Rubin, will not be part of the trial. Rubin’s lawyer said that his client has reached an agreement in principal with the government.