Black Friday Defendant Strikes Deal with Authorities

Online Poker | estimated reading time
2012. January 23.
Electronic payment processor executive <strong>Ira Rubin</strong> has signed a plea deal with the authorities investigating the cases related to the actions of 15 April, 2011. The judgement will be announced on 17 May, 2012; Rubin is facing 18 to 24 months in prison.
On the day that has since become to be known as the Black Friday of online poker, the FBI seized the web sites of PokerStars, Full Tilt Poker and the main URLs of the Cereus network, charging the owners, leading managers and payment processors involved with fraud, money laundering and conducting illegal gambling. A total of 11 persons were prosecuted, namely Isai Scheinberg, Raymond Bitar, Scott Tom, Brent Beckley, Nelson Burtnick, Paul Tate, Ryan Lang, Bradley Franzen, Ira Rubin, Chad Elie and John Campos.

Black Friday - FBI Action

In May, 2011, Bradley Franzen was the first to plead guilty; owning an electronic payment processor company, he admitted to have created fake firms and web sites in order to cover the illegal transactions. The fact he could expect a reduced sentence possibly contributed to his willingness for confession.

Last December, another of the defendants joined Franzen; 31 years old Absolute Poker co-founder Brent Beckley stated in front of Judge Ronald Ellis that he had been aware of committing a crime when he conducted payment processes by tricking US banks. Also, he had been conducting his illegal business between fall, 2006 and spring, 2011. The sentence on Beckley will be announced on 19, April; since he has also made a deal with the authorities, he can face up to 12 to 18 months in jail – instead of the theoretical maximum of 30 years.

Most lately, electronic payment processor executive Ira Rubin has also pleaded guilty. He has admitted that, between 2006 and March, 2011 he had been in connection with both PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker and that he had been disguising their transactions as those of fictional companies so that banks could not identify the true source of the transfers. With nine charges against him, Rubin was to face up to 80 years in prison but, eventually, he is likely to be sentenced for 18 to 24 months, due to his plea deal and pleading guilty of three of the chargers. The sentence will be announced on 17 May.

53 years old Rubin is currently behind bars. His lawyers have asked for a $300,000 bail but Judge James Colt refused, the risk of Rubin escaping being too high. He already has some record: the Federal Trade Commission sued his company Global Marketing Group in 2006 for involvement in issuing dud credit cards. The FTC sued for a compensation of $8 million but Rubin failed to show up on the court, fled the country and settled in Costa Rica. At the time of the FBI action of 15 April, 2011, he was at large once again, making his way to Guatemala and Thailand with fake papers. He was captured in Guatemala.

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