PokerStars license application suspended 2 years by New Jersey regulators

why-new-jersey-2According to Nathan Vardi at Forbes.com, PokerStars will be left out of the New Jersey online poker marketfor the foreseeable future as their application review has been suspended for two years by the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement (NJ DGE).

The primary reason given by the NJ DGE was the ongoing indictment against PokerStars founder Isai Scheinberg. Scheinberg was supposed to step down from any major role in the company following PokerStars settlement with the US Department of Justice, and according to reports he had ceded control of PokerStars to his son Mark Scheinberg.

However, following a bitter dispute over the failed attempt to purchase the Atlantic Club Casino court records filed by the Atlantic Club indicated that Scheinberg was heavily involved in the negotiation process.

It’s unclear if this is what gave the NJ DGE cold feet regarding PokerStars, or if their own vetting of the company turned up other “issues,” but for now, it would seem that PokerStars has been shutout of yet another US online poker market, and their chances going forward do not look all that promising, considering the precedent set in Nevada and now in New Jersey.

In a statement quoted by the Forbes.com article, the DGE said:

“The Division’s determination is based primarily on the unresolved federal indictment against Isai Scheinberg for the alleged violation of federal gambling statutes, namely, the Illegal Gambling Business Act and the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA), and the involvement of certain PokerStars executives with Internet gaming operations in the United States following the enactment of UIGEA,”

According to a statement by the DGE, PokerStars could have the suspension lifted, and their review process reactivated if the following occurs:

“The Division, within that period, may consider a request for relief to reactivate the application if significantly changed circumstances are demonstrated at which time the Division’s investigation of PokerStars and its affiliated entities and associated individuals will be resumed to assess suitability.”

 

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