Earlier this week, Full Tilt Poker completed its comeback to the online gaming community. Like a phoenix rising from the ashes, the once top online poker site received a joyous return from players around the world, and the poker tables were filled with tens of thousands of players within hours of relaunch. It had been over a year and a half, since the date poker fans dubbed ‘Black Friday’, that real-money games were suspended in Full Tilt poker rooms. The gaming license suspension was in revelation of what US Department of Justice investigators have called a Ponzi scheme.
One of the former owners of Full Tilt Poker Howard Lederer, who himself is a World Series of Poker winner, has been accused of using over $444 million of Full Tilt players’ money to pay himself and his fellow owners of the website. In lengthy investigations and several interviews with the press, Lederer has maintained his air of innocence, and condemned the Justice Department for accusing him of running a Ponzi scheme. He says he had no idea what Full Tilt was doing with payment processors to distribute player money.
However, most poker community professionals have not believed his innocent claims, and now one convicted former payment processor is calling him out. Chad Elie has gone to Twitter, before going to jail, to suggest Lederer is lying about his ignorance, and that Elie himself met several times with Lederer in regards to payment processing. Elie even shared a picture of an event that he, Lederer, and other Full Tilt employees attended with US Senator Harry Reid to refute Lederer’s denials.
Not surprisingly, Elie’s tweets are sparking interest from members of the poker community. Poker stars Daniel Negreanu, Randy Dorfman, and Tim Marsters all responded with tweets of their own asking for more information Elie may have. Negreanu in particular, has been very critical of Lederer since the Black Friday scandal.
Full Tilt Poker may have returned to the online gaming community, but the case that originally shut it down appears to be far from over.