NY Courts to Unseal Payment Processor Documents

by , Aug 11, 2009 | 2:48 pm

A US District Judge has granted Costigan Media — the folks behind Gambling911 — their request to unseal seizure warrants and (heavily redacted) court documents related to the seizure of some $34 million that US attorneys allege are ill-gotten gains from illegal online gambling.

This is a semi-significant ruling because while the First Amendment has stood up for such requests in most criminal prosecutions, there is less case law directly addressing matters of civil forfeiture, according to Judge Laura Taylor Swain … but ultimately, yes, when thousands of American citizens are having funds they believe to be theirs seized by the government, yes, the public has a right to know what’s going on.

Click here for 49 pages of freshly released legal documents, not all of which look like this:

The losing side, btw, in this mini case-within-a-case are ultimately the same Manhattan federal prosecutors who followed up these payment processee seizures with an indictment against Douglas Rennick — the Canadian payment processor who faces more than 50 years in prison (cumulative), $1.75 million in fines, and the forfeiture of nearly $566 million on charges of fraud, money laundering, and illegal gambling operations for his doing business with websites such as Full Tilt, PokerStars, Ultimate Bet, and others.

That indictment, of course, may or may not have come coincidentally on the same day Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ) introduced a Senate bill that would effectively make all the issues being adjudicated above moot in the future.

Regardless of what’s in play there, I think it’s clear why, indeed online poker related money issues really can’t be handled in the shadows — as much as some federal prosecutors would like such transactions to stay that way.

3 Comments to “NY Courts to Unseal Payment Processor Documents”

  1. Kevin Mathers

    Update from Joe Brennan of IMEGA on 2+2:


    The Court has ordered the SDNY to explain how the indictment of Mr. Rennick affects the government’s interests in the information redacted from the records the Court ordered unsealed.

    READ: “Tell us why the redacted information should remain so, now that an indictment has been handed down?”

    They have been ordered to provide this to the court by no later than Wednesday, Aug. 12th, at 12 noon.

    I have to say, the Court seems to be taking this very seriously, and the pressure seems to be on the SDNY here, to justify keeping those redactions.


  2. anonymous

    Hey Dan

    Where’s the update on Adam Richardson, the 2nd place player on AUFA and his donation?

  3. DanM

    Veru very soon.I meant to have it up this morning, which any editor can tell you means either tomorrow or so.