Are poker affiliates next in DOJ sights?
When Calvin Ayre got indicted this past week, some were wondering what took so long … because if the DOJ couldn’t nab the brashest of online gambling kingpins (Bodog did sports-betting for chrissakes!) then there had to be a formula — a legal-enough way to run an online gambling empire while steering clear of America’s internet police.
Stu notes that the investigation leading to Bodog’s shutdown wasn’t singular in scope, and asks who might be next on the DOJ’s hit-list. The answer to that question, I believe, is in the indictment itself — and though they don’t name any magazine or website by brand, the DOJ does reveal that after more than five years of investigation they consider certain media part of a criminal conspiracy to facilitate illegal online gambling.
Read and decide for yourself on the not-so-subtle nuances of the DOJ-Maryland office’s carefully chosen words:
6.Through these communications, members of the conspiracy caused the media reseller to create and execute an advertising campaign to increase the participation by gamblers in the United States on the BODOG.com website.
7. Through these communications, members of the conspiracy caused the media reseller to send invoices to BODOG ENTERTAINMENT GROUP S.A., d/b/a BODOG.com. These invoices represented the costs and fees for the creation and execution of the advertising campaign.
8. Members of the conspiracy caused funds to be sent by wire from accounts located outside the United States to accounts located in the United States to satisfy the invoices sent by the media reseller. These wire transfers totaled more than $42 million during 2005 through 2008.
The DOJ has been telegraphing their next move(s) with virtually every court filing for two years or more, and with Ayre’s indictment, you can see the legal play being set up by calling it all a conspiracy, bringing charges of “aiding and abetting” into play, and putting a specific dollar amount ($42 million) on at least one media operation’s ill-gotten gains.
Yeow. So what unnamed media had such a deal with Bodog worth $42mm? I
have few ideas can assure you it wasn’t Pokerati. There’s actually a remote possibility that since we’re talking about sports-betting here it’s not “poker media” at all … but assuming the DOJ understands the difference between rev-share and CPA, then if poker media isn’t in line for indictments or big money seizures of their own, then I’m pretty sure it means they’re cooperating.