Pokerstars Robbed By Chinese Collusion Ring
A massive cheating by a collusion ring of several dozen Chinese players has been reported on the poker message board 2plus2. The amount of the fraud on the PokerStars.com website is stated to be nearly $750,000. There was a quick response from PokerStars in dealing with the cheaters and agreeing to reimburse nearly $587,000 to the players who suffered due to the fraud.
The cheaters had been operating on $108 Double or Nothing sit and go tournaments since last summer, but the fraud was uncovered in February this year. The curtain on the fraud was lifted when one of the cheaters, going by the nickname Jane0123 complained on the 2+2 forum that his PokerStars account had been unfairly frozen by the operator and that he had his wining of $10,000 in the account.
Results Of Investigations
Investigations revealed that other players had reported to PokerStars about the ring, with one user responding that he had sent about 25 emails regarding his complaint. The Sharkscope data revealed that Jane0123 had made a profit of $56,300 by playing 11,766 Double or Nothing games and his average stake was $87. Further investigations showed that many other players dominated the Double or Nothing leaderboard at PokerStars. One of them was Wudiya, who was the biggest winner, having won about $96,000 on DON games in 2009. An interesting feature of the fraud was that often half of the players at any game were involved in the fraud, and most of them were from Hangzhou, a town in China.
Some reports estimate that the total amount of the fraud as rake to PokerStars was in the region of $600,000. Although a section of the players of 2+2 feel that it is easy to collude and defraud the DONs, and is difficult to detect such frauds taking place, others opine that PokerStars security could have been more vigilant and alert, much earlier, because the high magnitude fraud had been taking place since long.
Latest reports suggest that although investigations are in full swing, the fraud has not abated; another gang having taken over. The members of this group are also Chinese players from the Wenzhou area of China.
PokerStars has started the process of compensating the players affected by the fraud. The players who suspect that they have lost money due to the collusion can contact the company at their email address, which is firstname.lastname@example.org. The company has only been able to recover about $85,000 in cash or FPP from the cheaters. However, since the total amount to be paid out is $587,000, PokerStars will have to pay the balance amount from their own reserves.
Many of those who have been compensated by PokerStars complain that the amount of compensation that has been paid or promised is not adequate. One of the players, Simplicity8, affected by the fraud remarked that he played about seven thousand $52-$108 DONs in the first six weeks of 2010. He added that he suspected something going on, but was unsure, and gave up playing thinking that he was a losing player. He is very bitter about the fact that not only had the fraudsters stolen his money, but had also taken away his future earning power. He feels that he would have hit SNE (Supernova Elite) in a short time.