PokerStars Donates Zeurrr's Withheld Money to Charity

Poker Rooms | estimated reading time
2011. May 18. |
The withheld Sunday Million winnings of $518,402 of the Dutch player zeurrr will not be distributed among the final tablists; PokerStars released a statement in which they say the money is contributed to "charitable organisations which specialize in preventing underage gaming".
As we reported in March, PokerStars has withheld the $518,402 prize a Dutch player, 'zeurrr' won in the 5th Annual Sunday Million Tournament. It turned out later, that the screen name belongs to the 17 years old Jimmy Jonker, who clearly violated the room's regulations that do not allow underage persons to play at the site, because it is illegal.

underage gaming

PokerStars sent out the following email to a player called 'amande' on a popular poker forum:

"Hello,

Thank you for your email about the recent Sunday Million 5th Anniversary Tournament.

PokerStars is able to advise that the registered account owner of 'zeurrr' did not operate the account during that tournament. Further, the account was operated by an individual who was seventeen years of age, in breach of PokerStars' strict rules against underage gaming.

As you might imagine, underage gaming is a very serious issue for PokerStars. It is a violation of PokerStars' license agreements and it is crucial that we behave responsibly in dealing with these matters.

PokerStars' Responsible Gaming webpage states the following:

"Any underage player who has provided dishonest or inaccurate information regarding their true age may have all winnings forfeited and could face criminal prosecution."

You can view this on our website here:

http://www.pokerstars.com/about/responsible-gaming/

In accordance with this policy, we have decided to close the PokerStars account of the offender, and further, to seize all monies held in the account.

The funds from the account will be donated to charitable organisations which specialize in preventing underage gaming. We have made this decision because the player did not receive any advantage over other players, and we have acted in accordance with our usual policy on these issues.

I trust that this email clarifies our position on the matter, but if you have further queries, please feel free to write back any time.

Regards,

Michael J
PokerStars Game Security"

The poker community is highly upset with this decision, they argue that players paid to take part in the Sunday Million, the money should be distributed among the winners, who made the deal. PokerStars is unfair by giving away players' money to "some random charity" as one user calls it. Many suspect that this charity is just another way of money laundering. Even more players are enraged at PokerStars for not requesing any personal identificaiton of the players upon registration, only at major cashouts, therefore, they collect tremendous amount of rake generated by underage players.
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