This week, things spiraled out of control for the co-founder of Absolute Poker – Brent Beckley. Monday saw Beckley charged with a 14-month prison sentence, following the Department of Justice charge sheet issued on Black Friday. Beckley belongs to the 11-member group slapped with several criminal indictments, following the event on April 15, last year.
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Beckley earlier pleaded guilty to one of the nine charges on the list of Black Friday’s indictments. The hearing that was held last December for his Conspiracy to Commit Bank and Wire Fraud saw him take responsibility for his actions, in the presence of Magistrate Judge Ronald Ellisof the Manhattan District Court. Beckley was quoted as saying, “I knew that it was illegal to deceive the banks.”Beckley sought to persuade others to apply “incorrect transaction codes towards internet gambling activities.” Beckley had in fact cleverly sorted to disguise his monetary transactions by this method, so that it gave a false appearance that the transactions were legitimate.
To further add to this conspiracy, Beckley had in fact joined hands with others involved to create phony companies like flower shops and pet supply stores, to give authorities a false illusion of what he was really into. By using the phony companies to transact, Beckley and his group managed to process the money that came in with his offshore accounts.
Although, Beckley’s sentencing date was set for spring this year, Judge Lewis Kaplan pushed it back to consider an upward adjustment. Considering what he was in for, normally a charge of this degree would apply a 12-18 month jail sentence. However, in his case the 14-month sentence was reasonable. Judge Kaplan planned to study the “reasonably foreseeable pecuniary harm” to the banks that Beckley had during his sentencing pleaded guilty to defrauding. Judge Kaplan also quoted, “Beckley conspired to circumvent, and circumvented, governing laws of the United States in order to conduct or facilitate an unlawful business or businesses involving billions of dollars from which those businesses gained many millions of dollars.” If in fact Judge Kaplan decided to go through with the upward adjustment, Beckley would receive a harsher sentence.
However, Beckley was lucky as Judge Kaplan decided that the upward adjustment would not be necessary. In the past few months, the federal government hadconvicted those who were guilty in the Black Friday case. John Campos, Chad Elie, Ira Rubin and the most recent Ray Bitarareamong the recent defrauders sentenced in the past weeks.

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