AGCC Revokes Full Tilt Poker's Licenses
After over a week of deliberation, the Alderney Gambling Control Commission has announced it has permanently revoked the licenses of Vantage Limited, Filco Limited and Oxalic Limited, the three companies trading as Full Tilt Poker.
Amended DOJ Complaint Not Considered
When the US Department of Justice released its modified complaint on Sept 20th, many figured this would provide ammunition for the Commission to in fact revoke the licenses.
The commission addressed this and stated that the AGCC discounted the complaint and determined that the new developments were irrelevant.
As such, they proceeded with evidence presented prior to the resumption of the hearing and it was still plenty to justify the license revocations.
The commission based its decision to revoke Full Tilt's license on the various grounds under section 12(1) of the Alderney eGambling Ordinance, 2009.
Full Tilt was found guilty of violating seven out of eight grounds reviewed by the commission.
To paraphrase its findings, the AGCC found that:
- Full Tilt companies were insolvent
- Kolyma Corporation, an associate company, was insolvent
- Full Tilt companies failed to notify the AGCC when serious events that negatively impacted the company's operation occurred.
- Full Tilt failed to pay players their funds upon request
- Full Tilt failed to have sufficient assets to cover liabilities to players
- Full Tilt effectively offered credit to customers due to its inability to collect player deposits from bank accounts.
- Full Tilt provided inaccurate accounting records to the Commission.
Full Tilt Surprisingly Quiet
Two very surprising revelations came in the Determination Notice given by the AGCC.
The first was that neither Full Tilt Poker nor its legal representation elected to be present during the regulatory hearing.
The legal team for Full Tilt was at the pre-hearing applications process on September 19th and 20th to attempt to get the hearing adjourned further.
Once the AGCC struck that down, Full Tilt notified Commissioners that neither it or its legal team would take part in the follow-up hearing.
Furthermore, on September 27th, the AGCC allowed Full Tilt the opportunity to explain its actions and to offer comment.
FTP's legal representation were present, but they offered neither.
Last Ditch Effort Denied
In what likely equates as a last ditch effort to save any negotiations with the supposed "French investors," Full Tilt petitioned the AGCC to delay its findings and sanctions in order to complete negotiations.
The AGCC struck this request down as well due to insufficient grounds for the request and that it believes it is in the public interest to impose sanctions.
New Management May Reapply
The AGCC was quick to point out in its press release that the revocation of Full Tilt's online poker license does not prevent the business from reapplying for a license if it were to sell the company.
Furthermore, it states that any claims against Full Tilt are now matters for police and civil authorities.
The AGCC license revocation may indeed be the conclusion to a dark chapter in the Full Tilt Poker saga.
It is hard to imagine a company willing to buy a company $400 million in the red, facing federal prosecution, and now devoid of an operation license.
Full Tilt and DOJ Respond With Own Statements
Both the Department of Justive and Full Tilt responded with statements of their own today.
Full Tilt sent out a press release exclusively to pokerstrategy.com that exressed it's dissappointment with the judgment and charcaterized the AGCC's decision as "disregarding" player interests.
It also said it makes negotiations with the potential French investors more difficult, but it would continue to work to repay all players funds.
The Department of Justice posted a message on the justice.gov website that said it is working with the FBI to track down all internal Full Tilt accounting documents and to reclaim all player funds lost to FTP"S alleged fraudulent activities.
While the DOJ did say the repayment of player funds is possible, it will be dependant on a number of factors and is likely to take "many months."
For the full post from the DOJ, check here.