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Beleaguered online poker operator Absolute Poker has finally reached an agreement with the United States Department of Justice that will see it avoid prosecution under the ‘Black Friday’ action of 2011 in exchange for agreeing to forfeit all of its assets.
The settlement arranged with the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, Preet Bharara, and ratified by District Judge Kimba Wood on Monday will see Absolute Poker and its associated companies hand over all of its brands including Ultimate Bet, Absolute Entertainment SA and Blanca Games Incorporated.
The settlement was signed by Jerry Bernstein, counsel for Absolute Poker, on the final day of June and will see the operator forfeit ‘all assets including property of all kinds, real and personal, tangible and intangible, goodwill, right or non-physical resource that is presumed to represent an advantage in the marketplace, and anything having commercial or exchange value’ to the government for ‘disposition according to law’ under Title 18 of the United States Code, Section 981.
In exchange, the civil money laundering claims against ‘named Absolute Poker companies are hereby dismissed with prejudice’ excepting the cases involving Blue Water Services Limited, Trust Services Limited, SGS Systems Incorporated and Fiducia Exchange Limited, which are to remain pending.
“Each party shall bear its own costs and attorneys’ fees,” read the settlement.
“This stipulation and order of settlement shall in no way be deemed an admission of culpability, liability or guilt on behalf of the Absolute Poker group. Further, this stipulation and order of settlement shall in no way constitute any reflection upon the merits of the claims and defenses asserted respectively by the United States and the Absolute Poker group.”