Poker Pros Including Phil Ivey Owe Millions to Full Tilt
The ongoing Full Tilt Poker drama continues to unfold with a new series of events. The Bernard Tapie Group, who are in the process of finalizing the acquisition of Full Tilt and said to be hoping to end the deal already by the end of February, have announced an“obstacle” in the form of moneys owed to Full Tilt by a number of well-known poker pros.
Several of the players who are said to owe as much as $10 to $20 million and have not yet expressed a willingness to pay their debts including Phil Ivey, Layne Flack, David Benyamine, Erick Lindgren, Mike Matusow and a few others owing smaller but still significant amounts.
“If the money doesn’t come in, it creates a serious obstacle to completion of the deal. This isn’t the only issue with the takeover, and the deal won’t end on any one issue – but this is a substantial item” said Bernard Tapie Group lawyer, Benham Dayanim.
So far, the only player to have addressed the claims is Barry Greenstein, who posted a public response on the TwoPlusTwo poker forums where Greenstein admits to owing Full Tilt Poker $400,000, but says that he only wishes to pay back the money if is used to repay players.
It remains unknown just how much each of the other players still owe Full Tilt Poker but some sources indicate that Ivey and Lindgren both owe $4 million, while Benyamine and Flack owe $2 million each. Matusow and Greenstein owe less.
Groupe Bernard Tapie is seeking to buy Full Tilt for $80 million as part of its agreement with the Department of Justice but doesn’t want to acquire assets which will need to be litigated over later.