Online poker payment processor Ira Rubin sentenced

Posted by Steve Ruddock on Jul 27, 2012 Posted in Poker News | No Comments »

The cavalcade of Black Friday sentences began with a three-month slap on the wrist for Sun First Bank President John Campos, followed by the heftier 14 months Absolute Poker payment processor chief, and owner, Brent Beckley received earlier this week, and now the trend of increased sentences has continued in Judge Lewis Kaplan’s courtroom as payment processor Ira Rubin received the harshest sentence to date, amounting to a minimum of 40 months in prison for his role in facilitating transactions between online poker sites and US banks.

Thus far, every Black Friday defendant that has been into custody has eventually plead guilty to at least one of the offenses they have been charged with and all seem to be working with the government to strengthen the cases against the indicted individuals that are still at large.

In January Rubin pleaded guilty to a single charge of conspiracy that saw his potential sentence drop from 55 years to 18-24 months. However, Judge Kaplan saw things differently when it came to sentencing and decided the deal Rubin had cut with prosecutors was too lenient, telling Rubin: “You are an unreformed conman and fraudster,” and called his actions a “brazen” defiance of U.S. law. Kaplan also stated that “a significant sentence is necessary to protect the community,” according to Bloomberg.

When all was said and done Rubin received credit for the nine-months he has already served, but will not be eligible for release for at least 31 more months, and this is provided he exhibits good behavior. Even when Rubin does secure release from prison he will not be allowed to participate in any business occupation related to payment processing or financial services, according to the Bloomberg report.

There are still many more sentences to be handed down in the Black Friday cases, most notably the CEO of Full Tilt Poker who recently surrendered to US authorities and is now awaiting a court appearance after posting a $250,000 bond for his release. Bitar surrendered two weeks ago in what looked like a prearranged deal with the Department of Justice, but after his surrender Bitar found himself facing a new superseding indictment, and securing bail took over a week, despite Bitar having friends and family lined-up to post the bond that had apparently been arranged with prosecutors.

Needless to say, the sentences handed down to Beckley and Rubin this week are likely raising Bitar’s anxiety level, as he is seen as one of the biggest fish in the online poker pond when it comes to the 11 indicted individuals on Black Friday.


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