04/17/2012 : CEREUS POKER SITES CLOSE TO RESOLUTION WITH U.S. ENFORCEMENT?
Negotiations at a sensitive stage
After months of silence, an unidentified and ‘informal' source at Cereus Poker Network sites Absolute Poker and UltimateBet told the online poker information portal PocketFives this week that its negotiations with the US Department of Justice regarding involvement in the Black Friday indictments was close to bearing fruit.
The source told PocketFives, "Our discussions with the DOJ are still in progress. We are confident that these discussions are nearing resolution, while legal constraints prevent us from making further details public or speculating on a time line at this stage."
The Cereus sites, which are effectively dormant following the Justice Department enforcement action just on a year ago, have taken a low profile in contrast to the extensive coverage given to its bigger rivals and fellow defendants, Pokerstars and Full Tilt Poker.
Negotiations have been ongoing, with the deadlines agreed for resolution extended several times, militating against the reimbursement of seized funds to the players.
PocketFives notes that in June last year Cereus was in debt to the tune of over $50 million, but only had $5 million in assets. However, the company’s technology assets are thought to be valuable and could be sold to raise cash once a settlement is reached with the US government.
"The US Justice Department has seized a large chunk of UB.com’s bank accounts as part of a probe that concluded exactly one year ago this week (April 15, 2011). Those funds will be available to customers who have made a claim with the US government based on what is owed subtracted from what is under seizure.
"The Kahnawake Gaming Commission (KGC), which licenses UB.com and Absolute, suggested that players would likely see between 15 to 20 percent of what is owed to them," the information portal points out.