Ray Bitar Surrenders Himself to FBI, PokerStars to Buy FTP

Poker Rooms | estimated reading time
2012. July 03.
Full Tilt Poker CEO <strong>Ray Bitar</strong> has turned himself over to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), as part of a deal soon to be concluded with PokerStars.
Ray Bitar has set foot on American soil for the first time since Black Friday, 15 April, 2011. The Full Tilt Poker (FTP) CEO is one of the 11 defendants charged with fraud, money laundering and organising illegal gambling following the FBI actions on Black Friday. The aim of Bitar’s current visit was to turn himself over to the FBI and face the civil and criminal charges.

Ray Bitar
Ray Bitar

This is what can be concluded form Bitar’s letter to the FTP parent company Pocket Kings employees in Dublin, Republic of Ireland, published on the 2+2 forum. Although the authenticity of the letter has not yet been officially confirmed, EGR Magazine has reached the US DoJ and they confirmed that Bitar is indeed in the USA and he had been arrested by the FBI. Also, Forbes has already reported the story.

Bitar’s e-mail to the employees in Dublin reads as follows:

“To all Dublin Staff,

By now you probably have heard that I have returned to the US to deal with civil and criminal case that are pending against me in New York. We have all worked hard over the last 15 months to preserve Full Tilt’s assets and potential in order to provide for the repayment of all players, and that continues to be our top priority. It is as important as ever that we all do everything possible to make that happen and, hopefully our deal with Poker Stars will very soon make our goal a reality. My return to the US is part of this process.

I am particularly grateful to all of you here in Dublin for your hard work, patience and understanding during this difficult time. I believe that your hard work and dedication should not go unrecognized, and we have made arrangements for Poker Stars to guarantee all July salaries. You should therefore have no concern about coming to work during this period. After that, we expect that your employment contracts will be assumed by the buyer of the company’s assets.

For those that need to reach me, I expect to continue to be available by email and phone starting late Monday, New York time.

In the meantime, please refer any operational questions to **REDACTED**, and any HR questions to **REDACTED**.

Thank you all again.
Kind regards,
Raymond J Bitar.”

This appears to support earlier reports of PokerStars intending to purchase FTP; what is more, the conclusion of a deal might be close.

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