November 2, 2008 - The investigative news show "60
Minutes" has apparently been working on a story about online
poker - particularly, the cheating scandals that took place
at Absolute Poker and Ultimate Bet. You might have already
heard about it - I know I did. Well, it now appears that the
story will soon air.
As reported at Poker Players Online, according to a legal
consultant working on the story, Wendeen Eolis, the story is
wrapping up some loose ends and is planned for a screening
on November 9, which just so happens to coincide with the
airing of the final table at WSOP 2008.
On the website of "60 Minutes", which is celebrating
forty years of investigative reporting, there is no mention
of what this Sunday's episode is about - only an archive of
past episodes. And according to Eolis, that's just the way
CBS wants it. The story still needs some last-minute
finishing touches, including a trip to Las Vegas to catch up
with former WSOP champ and Absolute Poker cheating
conspirator, Russ Hamilton.
At the helm of hard-hitting reporter Steve Croft, the
story is to include interviews with WSOP poker pros and the
player detectives who first uncovered the cheating scandals
- no thanks to denial by Absolute Poker management.
I, for one, hope that Hamilton grills the hell out of
this story. In other words, I hope he asks the tough
questions that the Kahnawake Gaming Commission should have
been asking from the very beginning. Sure, the independent
commission headed by former New Jersey Gaming Commission,
Frank Catania, brought some important things to light (like
Hamilton's role in the cheating scandal), but I know the
online gambling community wants to see some legal action
brought against the perps - not just refunds.
Considering the high profile of "60 Minutes", I think
it's likely people will step up to bring this debacle some
more closure. If they don't, it's a major hit against the
online poker community, especially current efforts by the
Poker Players Alliance to get online poker carveouts on the
UIGEA. Can you imagine all the people watching this show who
know nothing about how online casino gambling and internet
poker works, only to see these huge cheating scandals, which
in effect, will validate their fears that online gambling is
dangerous and should be banned.
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