After the events of Black Friday changed the US online poker industry, organizations and people involved in the casino and poker industry are beginning to speak out. Gary Loveman, the CEO of Caesars Entertainment, one of the biggest casino entities in the US, commented on the accusations made against the Big 3 which includes PokerStars, Full Tilt Poker and Absolute Poker. Loveman claimed that the closing down of these three top US poker sites has forced the United States to see the necessity for making the gambling laws flexible so that the $6 billion industry will not go all in vain.
Loveman also stated that the closure of these three poker giants would not change anything much in the US online poker industry where there are millions of American poker fans who love to play poker online. “Instead, the question is this: Should we seize the moment to legalize online poker, permit a safe and legitimate industry in the U.S., and bring these jobs and revenues home?” “Unequivocally, the answer is yes,” said Loveman.
The 11 parties who are involved in the indictments have been accused of fraudulently operating websites, money laundering and misleading banks into transacting money for illegal poker. In regards to the reactions of the US poker sites themselves, Full Tilt and PokerStars have mentioned an agenda to defend themselves from the accusation and Absolute Poker is still looking at its court filings with the concerned litigators.
Loveman’s company also manages the World Series of Poker, one of the biggest poker events in the world which gathers a gamut of poker fans every year. Currently, online poker players in the United States are worried if these indictments will have consequences on the World Series of Poker tournaments, as qualifying in this big tourney involved buying in at smaller online poker sites.
The World Series of Poker winner last year was Jonathan Duhamel from Canada, who won about $8.9 million. The series had a total of 7319 entries last year. For several years now, Caesars has been struggling for the legalization of online gambling in the US to gain more popularity on the series.
Harry Reid filed a federal appeal last year, which was not really a bill but had provisions that would have allowed entities like PokerStars and Full Tilt to forego their operations in America for many years before they were permitted back into the market.
“Only federal legislation can clear up the current ambiguities in U.S. law and crack down on other online gambling like sports betting and casino games,” Loveman said. “Business is being diverted from legitimate, respected companies that employ thousands of people to fly-by-night, underground (and in this case, foreign) operations,” he added.