Everleaf Poker Network leaving US Market

Posted by Steve Ruddock on Feb 10, 2012 Posted in Online Poker News, Poker Gossip | 2 Comments »

If a report at PokerFuse.com is correct, it seems the US government is not done harassing online poker sites just yet. According to an unnamed source at the Everleaf Poker Network skin Minted Poker, the network (one of the few remaining in the US market) will be announcing its withdrawal from both the US and France markets.

The move comes after the Everleaf Poker Network lost its major payment processor for US players; which has caused withdrawals at the network to be considerably delayed –which players now understanding the reason for these delays.

A representative from Minted Poker told PokerFuse.com the following:

“Several weeks ago when the network lost one of the US processors, some of the processed funds were held back by what is now clear as the Department of Homeland Security,” writes the representative. “They have now also issued a letter to [cease] and desist operations in the USA, under threat of legal enforcement against the network.”

The Lottery and Gaming Authority of Malta (LGA), the regulatory body of the Everleaf Network advised the network that they should withdraw all services from the US market. As for the player funds that were confiscated by the Department of Homeland Security; the Minted Poker representative stated that the funds are “secure and ring fenced,” adding that the network is now in talks with Department of Homeland Security in order to return the confiscated money to the players.

If this is true, it would seem that current US-friendly online poker rooms still have a lot to fear from the US government. It also seems the industry is now dealing with the further complication of throwing the Department of Homeland Security into the mix; not just the Department of Justice and FBI –a very troubling development indeed.

According to the report on PokerFuse.com, the Everleaf Poker Network is expected to an official announcement on Friday, detailing their new Terms of Service (barring US and French players), which will read, “No person who is resident in Malta, France and USA may open an account, play, or in any other way participate in the ELG offerings and/or services.”. Maltese players are restricted as part of the country’s policy on disallowing residents from playing on any online poker sites licensed by the Lottery and Gaming Authority of Malta (LGA).

While not a powerhouse in the online poker world, the collection of over 100 small poker skins that make up the Everleaf Poker Network were ranked #27 by PokerScout.com in terms of overall traffic, with peak numbers approaching 1,000 real-money cash-game players. According to the source from Minted Poker –one of the network’s largest sites—roughly 20% of the network’s traffic came from US players. So, the pullout of the US market shouldn’t be a death-blow for Everleaf.

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2 Responses to “Everleaf Poker Network leaving US Market”

  1. KevinG says:

    For some reason I thought more than 20% of Everleaf is US. I thought it was over 50%.

    If it’s true, why would homeland security go after such a small network with 80% of there customers non-US?

    If we’ve learned anything in the last year, the DOJ goes after the big dogs to send the little sites/networks in hiding…

  2. Steve Ruddock says:

    They did go after the Yatahay Network after Black Friday as well. My guess is the truth lies somewhere in the middle of those two numbers, since the Everleaf rep is unlikely to admit how substantial the loss of the US market will be.

    We’ll know for sure in a week or two when the PokerScout.com numbers are up :)

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