Full Tilt, DoJ Agree on Forfeiture
Posted by: Mark Baldwin - Tue, 2012-01-31 16:18
In what may well go down as the most significant online poker news
of the first month of 2012, Full Tilt Poker has announced that its owners had agreed to the terms of the forfeiture of the operation’s assets to the US DoJ, an important first step in the brand’s transfer to French investment company Groupe Bernard Tapie. There’s nothing more and nothing less at stake here than the full repayment of each and every one of Full Tilt Poker’s real money players, left high and dry in the wake of the Black Friday indictments by the questionable financial moves the site had engaged in for years.
The above said agreement effectively opens the path for the French firm to pay $80 million to the DoJ in exchange for the said assets and the Full Tilt Poker brand. According to Laurent Tapie, GBT’s managing director, the actual completion of the Full Tilt Poker deal is still quite a bit away. GBT have nurtured hopes of launching the revived operation by March 1 2012, but there are still a few hurdles to overcome before there can even be talk of the re-launch. The Alderney Gambling Control Commission, the regulating entity which had issued Full Tilt its license has revoked same when the site’s financial woes were uncovered. GBT will need that license revived before it can get on with its business.
News of the agreement between GBT and the US DoJ has first surfaced in November 2011. Progress in the case has been tedious at best since, often exasperating the online poker community which is hoping for the full return of player funds. If the deal goes through, GBT will repay about $150 million to Full Tilt’s non-US players. US-based players will receive about $150 million from the US DoJ. As part of the deal, the DoJ will also dismiss the civil forfeiture procedure it has launched against FTP.