U.S. Lawsuit Claims UltimateBet Stole $20 Million

U.S. Lawsuit Claims UltimateBet Stole $20 Million

A lawsuit filed by eight top online high-stakes poker players claims that Excapsa Software, which is the parent company of UltimateBet Poker, stole approximately $20 million over a five-year period from 2003-2008. The suit, which was filed in the US District Court of Central California, charges that some of those in the highest ranks of UltimateBet Poker management were involved.  The complaint also states that UltimateBet Poker was in violation of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO). If found guilty of doing so, the plaintiffs could receive up to three-times the amount in damages being sought.


The Plaintiffs

Poker pro Brad “YukonBrad” Booth is one of the plaintiffs in the UltimateBet Poker suit.

Poker pro Brad “YukonBrad” Booth is one of the plaintiffs in the UltimateBet Poker suit.

The plaintiffs include various well-known UltimateBet poker players, such as Brad “YukonBrad” Booth, Dustin “NeverWin” Woolf, and Tom Koral. Two players, Booth and Dave Lizmi, are seeking damages of $500k each. Those are the highest single claims. In addition to those amounts, the suit says that UltimateBet Poker stole more than $2 million in additional funds from the named eight players.


The Claim

The lawsuit claims that the operators and certain players took advantage of other players in high stakes games by creating and exploiting a flaw in the security software. In doing so, they were able to view player hole cards and utilize the knowledge to dominate hands and games.

It’s also said that with the assistance of various principals, employees, and/or agents of Excapsa and its subsidiaries, those who were involved in the cheating activity were able to change their declared poker room identities. This was done to cover up their activity and evade discovery as the winnings were laundered through numerous UltimateBet accounts. In order to do this, it’s noted, the players required assistance from those inside the company. The total amount stolen by UltimateBet Poker from the eight named players and others who participated in the high-stakes games during this five-year period is estimated to be $20 million.


Sound Basis for a Suit?

This certainly does not appear to be a frivolous lawsuit. There has already been a wealth of information on the cheating scandal made public by various investigative reports. This includes a 60 Minutes feature, a Washington Post investigative series and a MSNBC story.  Additionally, there have been hundreds of articles and news reports published on the web regarding the UltimateBet Poker scandal.

Are UltimateBet Poker officials guilty of duplicity at the table?

Are UltimateBet Poker officials guilty of duplicity at the table?

The next step involves discovery, which is needed to confirm the identities of those involved and collect documents and correspondence related to the cheating scandal. The lawsuit will then be amended as it’s expected that after discovery it will become clear exactly who was involved and to what degree.

Although online poker sites are known for being safe and secure and insider cheating is rare, it can undermine public confidence in the online poker industry. Suspicions regarding this particular cheating scandal go back to as early as 2007 as blogs start to indicate that something underhanded may have been going on at Absolute Poker, which, like UltimateBet Poker, is part of the Cereus Poker Network. It will most likely be years before the suit goes to court or is settled.

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Posted by on Jan 22 2012. Filed under Online Poker News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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