USA doors opening to PokerStars
Certain details of a deal between PokerStars, Full Tilt Poker and the US Justice Department, have been released by PokerStars directors on Aug. 1, according to which:
* FTP is to forfeit all assets to the US government. The assets will then be transferred to PokerStars, which will pay $547 million to the US government over the following three years for them.
* FTP players who are owed monies will be able to claim relief from the DoJ Asset Forfeiture Money Laundering Service.
* Another $184 million will be paid by PokerStars directly without restriction to owed FTP customers outside the USA. The timeframe for this is 90 days.
* The deal will enter into force when PokerStars pays the initial tranche of $225 million. This must be done within the next six days.
* On its part, the US government will drop all civil forfeiture and money laundering charges against individuals related to PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker, which may clean the slate for the company to take part in any US legalized online poker market that may evolve.
Also, it has been specified in the statement that PokerStars plans to re-open Full Tilt Poker within 90 days of the formal implementation of the deal, and that it will be operated as a separate brand under a "new, independent management team."
Speaking of which, the management will not be allowed to include founder and major stakeholder Isai Scheinberg, one of the Black Friday indictees, or FTP directors like Ray Bitar, Nelson Burtnick, Howard Lederer, Chris Ferguson and Rafe Furst.
Furthermore, PokerStars management will not enter the French, Italian, Spanish, Danish, Belgian or Estonian markets with the FTP brand, while Full Tilt will remain present in Ireland, with legal compliance and regulatory supervision transferred to PokerStars' Isle of Man offices.
In addition, the company revealed plans to enable financial transactions between accounts in both brands.
It has been stated by Mark Scheinberg, chairman of the Pokerstars board: “We are delighted we have been able to put this matter behind us, and also secured our ability to operate in the United States of America whenever the regulations allow.”
A confirmation of the deal also arrived from Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara, who stated that the deal has allowed the US government to "quickly get significant compensation into the victim players' hands."