Late last week, a former PokerStars employee plead guilty to a single illegal gambling charge that date back to the Black Friday investigation of 2011.

Paul Tate, 42, stated his plea to U.S. Magistrate Judge Barbara Moses in a New York court room. Tate is now facing a sentencing in the case on November 21 and is facing as many as five years behind bars as a result of his plea.

Tate got caught up in the whirlwind of fraud and money laundering that marked the apex of the online poker era when he joined PokerStars as a technician. As part of his work he interacted quite a bit with payment processors and other key figures in the online poker behemoth’s demise.

For his part, Tate presented the very model of contrition as he entered his plea. According to a report on, Tate wore a muted grey suit and eyeglasses as he addressed the court.

Tate kept his comments brief, but expressed remorse for his role in the PokerStars scandal and stated that:

My family and I have paid a heavy price for this conduct.

Amaya, the current owner of PokerStars, had no involvement in the case whatsoever and, not surprisingly, made a concerted effort to distance itself from it. In a statement regarding the matter, an Amaya offical said the case had, “no impact or legal implications on our business or operations.”

In 2014, Amaya purchased the PokerStars brand for more than a billion dollars. More than $ 700 million of that price went towards settling the claims made by the victims of PokerStars employees like Tate.


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