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PokerStars Executive Faces 15 Years in Prison

Nelson Burtnick, one of the people charged in the case which shut down the poker companies PokerStars, Full Tilt and Absolute Poker, is facing 15 years in prison after striking a plea deal with federal prosecutors.

At present the former Full Tilt CEO, Raymond Bitar, is under house arrest in California

Burtnick, a resident of Ireland, has agreed to plead guilty to charges of conspiracy, bank fraud and money laundering in connection to illegal gambling operations. 

He will be sentenced on December 19th and it has been suggested that prosecutors will recommend leniency should he fully cooperate.

Burtnick worked for PokerStars and then Full Tilt between 2006 and 2011.

At both companies he was director of payments which involved working with third-party payment processors in order to trick banks into processing financial transactions.

So far five out of the 11 people indicted as part of the crackdown have accepted plea bargains with prosecutors.

At present the former Full Tilt CEO, Raymond Bitar, is under house arrest in California having surrendered to authorities in July.

Bitar had spent 15 months in exile in Ireland before returning and he now faces life in prison on charges that Full Tilt stole more than $350 million from gamblers.

PokerStars has since acquired Full Tilt’s assets and will be re-launching the website in legal markets over the coming months.

OCA News Editor

Jenny McKinnley is OCA’s financial correspondent. After spending years on the trading floor in both NY and London, she offers insight from the inside out on world financial news and events.

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