Degenerate poker players find ways of getting themselves into trouble, most of it is financial trouble. This happens when they end up borrowing money to fund their poker sessions which usually ends up with them losing all their money and not knowing how they will repay their debtors.
Some of these poker players who accumulate huge amounts of debt end up committing suicide as they see no way out while others take up dangerous assignments which involve breaking the law.
British Player Accumulates $60K Poker Debt
Andrew John Bennett showed up at an airport in Jersey on April 30 and told airport officials that he planned to play poker in two clubs on the Island. Jersey is between England and France and is the largest of the Channel Islands. When the authorities asked Bennett where the poker clubs were located, he wasn’t able to give them exact details.
They investigated further and found that he had in his possession a bank card that belonged to someone else and a carrier bag that had a strange substance. When the substance was tested, they found out that he was carrying 125 grams of cocaine that was 60 percent pure. The authorities claim that the wholesale value would have fetched Bennett around £9,000 and £11,000 while the street value would have brought him £18,000-£25,000.
Bennett told the authorities that he was carrying drugs in order to pay off a poker debt. He said he ended up getting drunk and losing over $60,000 in poker. That money did not belong to him and as a result, he was forced to carry drugs into Jersey to repay his poker debt.
Poker Forced Him To Carry Drugs
Julia-Ann Dix represented Bennett in court and told the Judge that Bennett was coerced into bringing drugs into Jersey due to his $60,000 poker debt. She said he wasn’t a regular drug mule and he was desperate to repay his debt as threats were made against him. She showed the Judge a copy of his black book where he had written a week prior to his arrest that he was in a very bad situation.
Dix said they threatened his family with dire consequences if he did not take the drugs into Jersey. The Judge said Bennett made poor decisions and in return gave him 6 years in prison for bringing in drugs into Jersey.
Prosecution Claims Poker Cover-Up
The prosecution did not accept the story that Bennett or Dix was spinning and claimed that Bennett was using the $60,000 poker debt as a ruse to distract the authorities from the fact that he was a drug mule.
They pointed out that when the authorities asked the 56 year old Bennett to share his passwords for his iPad and iPhone, he refused. They claimed that if his story was true, he would not have any concerns in disclosing his iPad and iPhone but he chose not to do so.
The Judge reminded Bennett that he could get an additional 1.5 years in jail for not disclosing his passwords but he chose to accept the jail time than share his passwords. The Judge also pointed out that this was only the second time in Channel history that an individual facing jail time chose not to disclose their passwords.
The other loose end in the story was that if Bennett owed $60,000 in poker debts, 125 grams in cocaine wasn’t enough to repay the debt in full. It would mean, he would have to do another trip to make up the remaining amount.
The lesson to be learned is that one should get help when they find themselves having to borrow to fund their poker games!