Paul Phua walks free from illegal World Cup betting charges

Good times for Ivey as he learns he’ll get his $1m bail money returned.

According to a report published yesterday by the Las Vegas Review Journal, Malaysian business magnate Paul "MalACEsia" Phua has been acquitted of all charges in his World Cup betting scheme case by a federal judge after the prosecution admitted they had no further evidence to present.

U.S District Judge Andrew Gordon barred government prosecutors from using any of the evidence that FBI agents had seized from Caesars Palace, where Phua had been allegedly running the multi-million dollar betting ring, labelling it “the fruit” of an illegal federal search before the actual raid was conducted by police.

This constituted for the vast majority of evidence the prosecution held against Phua, and lead to an attempted appeal on Gordon’s decision. However, it was overruled after the defence claimed their client would be “unfairly left to twist in the wind”. 

In total 8 men from Malaysia and China were arrested in connection with the case, six pleaded guilty, each getting fined and sentenced to five years probation on the condition they remained outside of the USA. The case against the seventh individual was dropped.

As for Phua, he’s now a free man, but he won’t be using that freedom to jump into any World Series of Poker (WSOP) events running currently, at least according to his lawyers, who told the court he would be leaving the country “as soon as possible”.

 “Paul Phua stood ground for himself, his friends and family and all of us”, said one of his defence lawyers David Chesnoff. “Ultimately, he has been vindicated by our constitutional system and the honesty and strength of our federal judiciary. He is free.”

“Phua stayed in the country to defeat these charges because he was innocent and because the government’s misconduct made the case even more unjust”, added the other in Thomas Goldstein.

The dismissal also comes as fine news for famous high stakes poker players Phil ‘Polarizing’ Ivey and Andrew ‘good2cu’ Robl, who each posted $1,000,000 in bail money for Phua – whom they had befriended at the poker table in the past – to be released. That money, along with Phua’s $48 million jet and passport, will now be returned.


Other Poker news

Leave a Reply

To post comments you need to Login or register your free HighstakesDB account.


No comments have been posted yet.