A poker backer has accused Maurice Hawkins of failing to be a man of his word. The multiple World Series of Poker Circuit (WSOPC) ring winner allegedly refused to adhere to a staking deal, and owed more than $100,000 to a North Carolina entrepreneur known as Randy Garcia.
Garcia recently took to Twitter to call out Hawkins, saying he made a huge mistake by trusting the poker pro. Garcia said the agreement was made two years ago and until now, Hawkins has not fulfilled his promise despite cashing for more than $1 million. The poker backer was left with no choice but to take legal action.
How It Started
Garcia met Hawkins at the WSOPC in 2017. A poker aficionado, Garcia struck a deal with the HPT champion so that he could still be involved with poker amid his hectic work schedule. Garcia began staking Hawkins in March 2017, and provided him a bankroll of 50 percent of his action. Things initially went great – Hawkins finished third at a Circuit event in May, just before the WSOP. However, the poker pro informed Garcia that he burned through the entire bankroll playing blackjack the next day because he was depressed.
Garcia dealt with the situation in a civil manner, responding with kindness and understanding, until he found out that Hawkins also used the exact same excuse with another backer. To recover his money, Garcia had to shell out some more to fund Hawkins’ bid at the 2017 WSOP. The player achieved favorable results, making the final table of two separate events.
Garcia then travelled to Vegas to collect his share but Hawkins never ran out of excuses. Garcia was only able to receive a fraction of what he was owed and Hawkins continued to take part in other events.
When the businessman realized he was being fooled, he stopped sending money to Hawkins and opted out of the deal. The poker pro refused to pay Garcia even after cashing in for nearly $1 million since their deal had now ended. Hawkins allegedly told Garcia to wait and “be patient” everytime the poker backer asked him to fulfill his obligation. Both agreed on a monthly payment plan, but after the first two months, Hawkins stopped his payments.
Garcia said he tried to keep the matter privately but Hawkins’ unwillingness to settle things with him left him with no choice but to file a case in court and expose what he did, warning the poker community not to make the same mistake he did.
Final Verdict
A Circuit Court in Florida ruled in favor of Garcia during the final hearing of damages scheduled for May 21, 2019. During the hearing, Garcia was represented by his legal counsel while he was present by telephone. Hawkins, however, failed to appear in court or send any person on his behalf.
Judge Jeffrey Gillen ordered Hawkins to pay a total of $115,828.34, including prejudgment statutory interest and court costs. The court retains jurisdiction on the case and may modify its ruling as necessary.
Hawkins Fights Back
In a response to Garcia’s accusations, Hawkins said they were trying to handle things amicably and had made several financial transactions and conversations with no connection to backing. According to Hawkins, Garcia demanded a lump sum payment and threatened him to expose him on Twitter and defame him if he would not oblige. When he refused to do what the businessman wanted him to do, his name was splashed all over the news and social media.
Hawkins criticized Garcia’s attempt to create negative publicity against him, exposing him as a scammer when the truth is quite otherwise. The player said his financial obligations to Garcia had nothing to do with backing and it shouldn’t even count as poker news. Hawkins claimed the matter has now been handled and Garcia can confirm the same.
After going on record to denounce Hawkins, Garcia seemingly stepped back and said that his lawsuit against Hawkins was in the process of being amicably resolved.
This is the latest issue that Hawkins has been embroiled with in relation to a backing deal. Last year, the poker pro was also sued by Hal Lewis, a lawyer from South Florida, after failing to pay his backer $22,788.

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