National Poker Challenge-D
“Alternative” Card Club Shut Down in Arkansas

by , Nov 21, 2007 | 10:46 am

We told you a while back about the National Poker Challenge opening up in Little Rock … on the self-declared, “hey, we are legal!” concept. Authorities (DA included) didn’t agree, and a couple of days ago Little Rock Police went in Prohibition-raid-style (like they said they would) and shut the business down. Bummer … but we kinda saw it coming, no?

[link props: ppa blog]

The NPC peeps arrested still contend their rake-free model — players payed $100/month to be “tracked” — is legal, and plan to fight it in court (just like they said they would).

Could this be the battle some sicko, poli-minded action junkies have been jonesing waiting for — a fight that forces at least one state to deal with outdated laws being applied to a game they didn’t really conceive of way-back-when? If so, this bust seems to be part of the plan. The NPC has/had clubs in Little Rock, Portland, and Memphis, where the company is headquartered. When it comes to poker penalties and the statutes behind them, the game in Arkansas might be softer than just about anywhere else.

4 Comments to “National Poker Challenge-D
“Alternative” Card Club Shut Down in Arkansas

  1. Karridy

    Just testing out the comment system. lol

  2. Wes

    Arkansas is a bad place for the pro-poker forces to pick a fight. Arkansas is much more likely to follow along after several other states have made poker laws more rational than to be out front on the issue. The political and legal powers in Arkansas are weak-tight calling stations.

  3. DanM

    Wes, I’m not sure I follow. Aren’t weak tight the best to play against? And the Arkansas statutes as they stand — with the $10-$25 fines — aren’t those pretty weak? I gotta think as Southern as Arkansas can be, they haven’t forgotten the days when they were the Las Vegas of the Ozarks … which probably has something to do with the laws as they stand now.

    Come on, don’t make me go and do real research by asking the NPC guy how continuing to run when the police say “we are going to bust you if you do” is part of the company’s overall strategy!

  4. Wes

    Don’t bother with the research, because my point is that the judges that will hear this case are not necessarily going to make a principled application of the law to the facts. Even if the poker room is technically right, they are going to lose in court in Arkansas. I’ll take action and lay odds on that one. The politicians could change the law, but there are a very few, very powerful interest groups that run the legislature and legalizing poker is not on their radar. I just think it would be better for the cause if the test cases were in other states. Once the politicians in Arkansas get some cover (“It’s working in [fill in name of state] isn’t it?”), they are more likely to act.