Last Friday the Poker Players Alliance declared that they have filed a motion to join the year-old case from the state of Kentucky against PokerStars.
This is a pending lawsuit from the state of Kentucky against PokerStars employees and former affiliates. The goal of the lawsuit is to collect millions of dollars in alleged losses of Kentucky poker players during the five years that the online poker site was in operation.
According to the Poker Players Alliance executive director John Pappas “This entire lawsuit is based on a long-shunned 19th Century sore loser statute, which is about as applicable today as the anti-dueling laws still on the books. The Commonwealth has spent countless resources and time figuring out how to extort money from online poker companies when they could have spent that time creating a safe and regulated market that would have raised equal or greater amounts of money to benefit the consumers and taxpayers of the Commonwealth both now and in the future. The affected players should be the ones who collect from this suit, not the government and certainly not the attorneys.”
PokerStars left the United States in April 2011 and is only now beginning to come back. After changes in company ownership PokerStars finally received a license to provide online poker services from Atlantic City. PokerStars has released a statement that it “welcomes the intervention of the Poker Players Alliance to this suit.”
Vice president of corporate communications, Eric Hollreiser, continues to say that “While we do not believe the suit has merit and will continue to pursue the case in the courts, if there is a monetary judgement it should go toward the consumers who played on PokerStars and not to line the pockets of opportunistic plaintiff’s attorneys.”
Kentucky has a history of starting suits against online poker companies and was even able to get a $15 million settlement from Bwin.Party in 2013.
The Poker Players Alliance and others believe that up to this point the lawsuit is nothing but a detriment to the online poker economy and only helps to serve state legislators.
While it is still unclear where the Kentucky suit will land, having the backing of the poker player alliance will surely help the cause of PokerStars. Many poker players are glad to see PokerStars once again available in the United States, and they do not want old issues to stand in the way once again.