The Future of Absolute Poker Looks Bleak

May 9, 2011

Absolute Poker, sister site of, both on the CEREUS Network has apparently been making some changes behind the scenes. At first, there were reports that the online poker site had shut down due to lack of business after the FBI seized their domains and prompted them to shut out all US traffic for good. However, the site issued a statement that they were not in fact declaring bankruptcy, but just “restructuring” some of their operations.

“As previously stated, Absolute Poker and UB ceased their U.S.-facing operations due to recent legal developments in the United States. The company is currently restructuring and is focusing its resources on consolidating its non-U.S., rest-of-the-world operation and software business.

In order to have a more efficient and successful future business, an immediate need to downsize and streamline operations significantly at both online poker rooms has been required. Absolute Poker and UB continue to operate their non-U.S.-facing business.”

So to define “downsizing,” it means laying off 300 employees and the online servers shutting down, for the time being. It is doubtful these employees will get paid. They may in fact get treated as Bet On Sports did back in 2006 when they closed down—no jobs, no paycheck.

Actually, right now Absolute Poker is still up and running in Europe, but with little traffic considering the questionable news that’s been circulating around them lately.

On Friday, Costa Rican authorities raided the company’s headquarters that were operating in the country’s San Jose capital. Prosecutors and agents entered the premises on the basis of a search warrant that was issued by Pavas criminal courts. This allowed authorities to search the residential homes and offices of those associated with the two online poker brands in Santa Ana, Escazu, and Rohmoser.

These actions come after accusations were brought about by Preet Bharara, the US Attorney for the Southern District of New York, against founders of Absolute Poker, Full Tilt Poker, and PokerStars.

Currently, the companies face $500 million in fines for allegedly violating the UIGEA, committing bank and wire fraud, and laundering money. However, a letter was sent to shareholders that read, “with no cash on hand and no prospects for any cash flow for the foreseeable future, the Board of Directors is required by Norwegian law to enter the bankruptcy process.”


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