Borgata Casino Sued For Cancelled Poker TournamentMay 16, 2014 2:15 pm
Back in January, the 2014 Borgata Winter Poker Open in Atlantic City was cancelled after a large number of counterfeit chips were discovered to have been used during the $560 NLHE Re-Entry tournament. In April, the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement (DGE) then gave its directive on how payout distribution for the players should look like, leading to today’s situation in which six disgruntled players are now suing the Borgata for a list of grievances, including negligence and breach of contract, whilst seeking $33,756 each in damages for their treatment.
The $560 NLHE Re-Entry tournament attracted 4,812 competitors at the time to create a prize pool worth $2,325,835. The play was subsequently suspended when just 27 players were left, who were later awarded $19,323 each from the remaining $1.43 million prize pool, instead of $53,079 each if the prize money had been split equally. The Borgata Casino also refunded tournament entry fees to 2,143 players affected by the fake chip scandal orchestrated by Christian Lusardi (photo).
Nonetheless, questions remain as to the fairness in which the money was divided up, and in particular regarding allegations the casino had already paid some of the final 27 players sums of money above the $19,323 in return for agreeing to a confidentiality deal.
The Civil Action Complaint lawsuit has now been brought by legal representatives Maurice B. VerStandig and William H. Pillsbury of Offit Kurman, on behalf of the six players Duane Haughton, Michael Sneideman, Cuong Tran, Alvin Vatanavan, Christopher Korres, and Cuong Phung. As an extract of the lawsuit, explains:
“The complainants allege that The Borgata has given many of the 27 finalists more than $19,323. According to the complaint, “Upon information and belief, the Borgata has privately agreed to pay monies over and above the Paid Sum to various members of the Final 27, in exchange for each such recipient executing, inter alia, a confidentiality agreement, and the Borgata has intentionally set out about ensuring the various members of the Final 27 not know how much money has been paid to select colleagues of theirs.”
Other charges levelled against the Borgata include “inadequate” security surveillance, and the casino running the tournament in a manner inferior to that reasonably expected by a professional casino. A summons has now been issued by the court.