Mike Postle, one The 42-year-old poker guru, who has been accused by many to cheat in games streamed at a Sacramento casino, has never wavered in declaring himself innocent. From the end of September 2019 when Veronica Brill, another player, tweeted her suspicions that Postle’s winning streak at the Stones Gambling Hall was too good to be true, Postle insisted he was the victim of a conspiracy.
For example, when I reported his story to WIRED, Postle told me that all the allegations against him were “fake news” and that he was targeted inexplicably by people who crave fame or money.
Now, Postle is fighting back against a bunch of poker celebrities who have come out to see him as a cheater. On October 1, Postle filed a lawsuit alleging $ 330 million in damages from dozens of named defendants.
Among those on Postle’s legal list are Daniel Negreanu, a Canadian professional athlete who has won more than $ 42 million in live matches; Haralabos Voulgaris, a former professional gambler who made himself a hit as director of quantitative research and development for the NBA’s Dallas Mavericks; and Run It Once, a poker training company founded by Phil Galfond, three-time World Series of Poker event winner, who recently start a project to analyze Postle’s past thousands of hands. Brill, who told me this summer that she feared being sued by Postle, is also a defendant, as well as ESPN, aired a Sports Centre part about the fraud scandal in October last year.
The crux of Postle’s lawsuit is that the people accusing him of knowing they are lying by calling him a scam on Twitter, YouTube or other media. “Not only did the defendants, and each of them, have no reasonable basis to believe these statements,” the complaint said, “nor did they believe the truth of these statements, and indeed in fact they know the statements are false. Postle claims that he has suffered tragic consequences due to the accusations against him, including a complete loss of his poker career and an amount of stress that makes him almost unable to leave. out of my house. (The second statement probably contradicted the fact that in early March, Postle called me and said he was at an airport en route to Florida.)
The complaint also contains some intriguing details that are sure to get the world of poker talking. Chief among them is a passage that mentions the suspicion that Postle had received the advice of his opponent’s cards on a phone he used to keep on his lap. The complaint says that Postle used the phone to check his sports betting, and that “he started placing the phone between his legs when he started receiving inappropriate text messages or pictures from the woman he was with at that time “. The complaint also has a single line that suggests that Postle’s legal team will seek to attack Brill’s character: “Defendant Brill has a history of denouncing many people over the years, none of which has ever been. prove”.
Much of the poker world, including many named defendants, seems to have greeted the news of Postle’s lawsuit with ridicule. In response to my tweet about this case, for example, Negreanu posted one Will Ferrell’s GIF is laughing. Another defendant, Todd Witteles, called the lawsuit “obviously frivolous” and has vowed to fight it. The prevailing sentiment among the community remains that Postle must have found a way to see his opponents ‘hole cards in the Stones’ live stream games. There is no direct evidence of such a scheme – no accomplices have confessed their involvement. But many elite players claim that Postle made hundreds of weird but beneficial decisions, going against modern poker theory, an approach known as optimal game theory. They assumed that someone would only make such a decision if they possessed an unfair advantage. Postle’s attorney, Jared Densen, did not respond to a request for comment.
Brill, who led the charge against Postle in the first place, says Postle’s lawsuit was designed to silence critics. “I feel as if this is an active scare tactic,” she told me. “If we all can’t run away out of fear then we’ll allow a precedent set in our community and people who want to call it cheating when it happens will be too scared to do so. We will set a standard in the community where people are afraid to speak up for what’s right. “
Shortly after learning of the lawsuit, Brill started a GoFundMe campaign to raise money for his defense; to date she has earned more than $ 26,000. She told me: “I also have a few angel sponsors who want me to accept the case and keep exploring, and they are willing to pay. If some of her coders committed the same thing to the cause, the Stones’ fraud story could have just begun.
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