A Kahnawake Gaming Commission press release has reported the return of $22 million to players who were cheated out of it by certain users under their jurisdiction. These users had been uncovered using tactics to cheat honest players out of their money at certain online poker sites.
In January, players at Ultimate Bet reported what were described as “statistically anomalous results” that came about while they were playing against certain other players at the site. These results were more than merely suspicious as it became clear that certain players were winning far too often on hands that it would not normally be possible with, for it to be either skill or luck. This resulted in an in-depth investigation, the findings of which rocked the online poker playing community.
An employee of Ultimate Bet had access to a “super user” login account which enabled him to create fictitious players that could sit-in on games, while he could use his knowledge of the software to “see” other players’ hole cards. This enabled him to win games with hands that would not otherwise have stood a chance. It was only due to the vigilance and determination of players from Jackpot City Casino who were losing to the fictitious player that the matter was investigated and the culprit caught.
Kahnawake licenses Tokwire Enterprises who are the owners of the online poker site, Ultimate Bet. Interestingly, this site is sponsored by Phil Hellmuth, known in some circles as the Poker Brat! Following the results of the investigation, Tokwire was fined a total of $1.5 million and ordered to pay back $22 million to players who were wrongly cheated out of their money.
The Commission also pressured Ultimate Bet to completely revamp their player control system, to prevent anything like this from happening again in the future. This was done as a condition of Ultimate Bet keeping their licence with Kahnawake. For the record, both the fine along with the reimbursements have been paid in full.
Law enforcement agencies have been alerted to the case and the legal authorities can choose whether to indict the parties involved or not. As Tokwire has already received a punishment in the form of the fine, they are unlikely to face further proceedings.
The Ultimate Bet website has been rendered secure in an effort to display their commitment to stamp out all cheating. By their tough stance in this matter, Kahnawake have similarly proved that they will be tolerate cheating or any other form of unfair play, asserting their position as one of the world’s largest and most respected Internet gambling licensors.