Chino Rheem receives probation from Epic Poker League

Posted by Steve Ruddock on Aug 20, 2011 Posted in Poker News | No Comments »

After Chino Rheem’s $1,000,000 win at the inaugural Epic Poker League Main Event you would expect him to be followed to the cashier’s cage by friends and well-wishers, which was in fact the case. However, in addition to Rheem’s friends and family, there was also another group of people following Rheem as he collected his tournament prize; a growing list of debt collectors from across the poker world.

Rheem’s issues with repaying loans went public when Ben Lamb posted his tale of “getting Chino’ed” during the World Series of Poker, and since that time a number of other players have come forward with their own stories of how Chino owes them money, including Tom Dwan, Will Molson, and Joseph Cheong.

Unfortunately for these players Chino actually didn’t make enough in the Epic Poker League to pay off his debts, not because he owes more than a million dollars, but because he was rumored to have only 10%-20% of his action in the tournament. According to sources, Rheem was backed for the tournament by Cirque de Soleil creator Guy Laliberte who would receive 70% of Rheem’s winnings, with a further 10% going to Guy’s personal charity, One Drop –which would explain the One Drop hat Chino was wearing.

It seems two of the smaller debts were paid in full, the one to Ben Lamb and one to Eric Cajelais (Google Eric Cajelais and you’ll see that Chino made a very wise decision to pay the Canadian pro in full) while other players received about 10% of the amount they were owed.

As Rheem’s indebtedness became public the Epic Poker League’s Standards and Conduct committee decided to examine the case. Below is the statement that was issued after the Standards and Conduct Committee looked into the matter, eventually deciding to put Rheem on probation.

During the formation of the Epic Poker League, the Standards & Conduct Committee made a policy decision that any personal conduct that occurred prior to the League’s formation would not affect initial eligibility of a league member. The Committee, however, communicated to the League members that subsequent to the start of League play, the Committee would enforce discipline against any League member who violated the League policies, including the Players’ Code of Conduct, or the law. As a result of ongoing personal financial obligations incurred prior to the League’s formation but impacting the League during the Inaugural Epic Poker League Main Event, the Committee has voted to place David “Chino” Rheem on probation in order to effectively monitor the personal conduct of Mr. Rheem as he works to meet his personal financial obligations as required under the Players’ Code of Conduct. Under the integrity and Honor principles of the Player’s Code, meeting “financial responsibilities on time and honoring contractual agreements” is required to maintain eligibility. In reaching its decision, the Committee recognized that Mr. Rheem used best efforts and all of the proceeds he personally received from winning the Inaugural Epic Poker League Main Event to partially satisfy outstanding financial obligations.

By order of the Committee, Mr. Rheem must continue to proactively repay his outstanding debts by, from this point forward, using any and all proceeds Mr. Rheem personally receives from personal poker winnings worldwide to satisfy all of his remaining financial obligations in an orderly fashion. In addition, Mr. Rheem must continue to report to the Committee regarding his compliance with the terms of his probation. The probation period will remain in effect until Mr. Rheem has satisfied his pre?league formation financial obligations. Failure to do so or any subsequent violations of league policies or the law by Mr. Rheem will result in immediate suspension of Mr. Rheem from the League.

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