Monday February 24,2014 : DICRISTINA APPEAL FOR REVIEW FAILS IN NEW YORK COURT (Update)
Court declines request for review
The New York-based 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals today declined to consider a review of the ruling in the DiCristina v. United States, 13-564 case.
Lawrence DiCristina, a bicycle shop owner, was convicted of running twice-weekly Texas Hold'Em Poker games in his Staten Island warehouse between December 2010 and May 2011.
The group organised the poker games, laid on security and refreshments and took 5 percent of the pot in each hand played, which was recorded to be in the tens of thousands of dollars each night .
On appeal in 2012, New York U.S. District Court Judge Jack Weinstein set aside the conviction and found that DiCristina could not be prosecuted in terms of the Federal Illegal Gambling Business Act as the statute was ambiguous in what gambling it covered, further saying Texas Hold'em didn't fall under the law as it was "predominated by skill".
At the time, Weinstein's conclusion received widespread media coverage across the United States, the support of Poker advocacy groups and was used as precedent in numerous arguments, including Black Friday indictments against key Full Tilt Poker figures.
However, a year later in August 2013, U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Chester Straub reinstated the poker conviction saying at the time: "Because we find no such ambiguity, we decline to limit the statute's reach beyond its plain terms".