May 11 2011

Cereus Poker Network and DOJ reach agreement

written by: Steve under News Comments: Comments Off

After a really bad week for the Cereus Poker Network, that saw offices raided in Costa Rica, a shareholder company file for bankruptcy, as well as the dismissal of 95% of their employees including the 11 sponsored players under contract with the two sites, poker players with funds tied up at AP or UB Poker were looking for any sign that they might see that money anytime in the future.

And on Wednesday morning that glimmer of hope finally came forward as Absolute Poker announced in a press release that they had reached an agreement with the US District Attorney Office in the Southern District of New York that will start the process of returning player funds.

While the press release did not guarantee anything, or present any kind of time table, it is the first step in the right direction by the Cereus Poker Network since Black Friday, and undoubtedly UB Poker and Absolute Poker money will still be considered a toxic asset in the poker community the news that the sites will be working with the DOJ may see some people start taking a chance and buying up UB and AP money for a fraction of their worth –the going rate right now is about $.25 on the dollar.

Here is a look at the entire press release issued by Absolute Poker:

Absolute Poker has reached an agreement with the United States Attorney’s office for the Southern District of New York (“SDNY”). Under the agreement, the US Attorney’s Office has agreed to provide all necessary assurances that third parties may work with Absolute Poker to facilitate the return of funds, currently held by third party processors, to players located in the US. This provision is an important step to returning US player funds.

The Company has also notified the SDNY that it has closed its US-facing operations, and it has agreed to the cessation of real money poker play in the US. As such, Absolute Poker has not requested the return of its worldwide domain names,, and, and today’s agreement does not provide for their return. The agreement also provides for the appointment of Monitor, approved by the US Attorney’s Office, to assess the Company’s compliance with the terms of the agreement.

Absolute Poker’s top priority has always been, and remains, the refund of account balances to its U.S. players. Unfortunately, the Company still faces several legal issues which must be navigated before funds can be paid out to US players. The Company’s US attorneys, Blank Rome LLP, continue to work diligently to resolve these issues, which is a necessary further step to facilitate the return of funds to players. Player funds, therefore, will not become immediately available for withdrawal as a result of today’s agreement with the DOJ.

A Company spokesperson said: “Today’s signing of the agreement with the DOJ is an important step towards the safe and efficient return of funds to our US players. We can now move as expeditiously as possible to collect player monies from third party processors as a prelude to establishing proper mechanisms for the return of funds to our US players. As previously announced, we have already taken specific actions to exit the US market by closing our US-facing operations. Blank Rome LLP will continue to engage in discussions with the SDNY in order to complete the necessary agreements for the final transfer of frozen fund balances to our US players. This remains our highest priority. We will continue to update our players and the poker community, as we move forward to resolve outstanding issues.”

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