John Pappas, who heads the Poker Players Alliance (PPA) said that although US poker players have had mixed results in receiving their money back from the indicted US online poker sites, his best guess is that there might be $100 million to $500 million involved.
John Pappas stated that there is an estimated 100000 professional poker players who might have had tens of thousands of dollars in their accounts, and some might have had higher amounts. He also said, it is impossible to put an exact figure declaring the amount and the number of players involved but his best estimate regarding the matter varies from $100 to $500 million.
Post the Black Friday indictment, PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker were the first to enter into a formal agreement with the DoJ regarding the repayment of US poker player funds. PokerStars has already begun returning players funds while Full Tilt has had some internal issues that is delaying the same. Absolute Poker’s matter, however, remains unresolved says John Pappas.
According to the poker advocate, Full Tilt Poker and PokerStars have a huge international presence while Absolute Poker largely focused on the US market, hence they are facing more problems than the other two, and additionally there are also rumours of bankruptcy. Hence, how players would receive their funds from these sites is yet to be worked out.
The PPA had been hopeful about the current administration of President Obama in supporting the matter, and they said that the previous administration was hostile towards the same.
Toby Moffett, a former Democratic member of the US House of Representatives is also a PPA consultant, and he said it is surprising why the Obama administration has not shown its support to online poker yet, since the revenue involved makes it an obvious reason to be supported. He also added that they might be hampering their own progress if they do not support online poker since it might affect Obama getting re-elected. It is extremely risky to go against online poker at this point since it might affect the voters to a large extent.
The PPA estimated around ten million Americans to be playing online poker before the shutdown of the top three online poker sites. Other online sites are still functional in the US and poker advocates caution people against using these sites because of the risk that might be involved.