Paul Tate avoided a date with a US prison cell after turning himself in to US authorities for his role as the payments director at PokerStars during the Black Friday-era.

Tate stood in front of US District Judge Lewis Kaplan in a Manhattan court room on Monday to face the music for his role in the epic online poker scandal and was pleasantly surprised by the song that was playing. Judge Kaplan not only let Tate off with a $119,000 fine, he also let him walk away a free man.

In an address to the court, Judge Kaplan praised Tate for turning himself in to US authorities after a five-year exile on the Isle of Man. Kaplan had been facing up to five years in prison for operating an illegal gambling business.

Though he was wanted in the US, law enforcement on the Isle didn’t think his crimes were extradition-worthy and that meant he could have dodged American law enforcement indefinitely, according to a report from Reuters.

Tate, however, seemed to show true remorse for his role in the scandal and that drew praise from the judge who said:

Given that you couldn’t be extradited for this, you deserve a world of credit for coming to face the music

With his legal troubles behind him, the 43-year-old Tate is now free to move on with his life. The former payments director continued working for PokerStars until 2014 when the company was sold to Amaya Gaming for $4.9 billion.

Tate is the ninth person to stand before a judge on charges related to Black Friday. The two remaining fugitives, PokerStars founder Ira Scheinberg and Absolute Poker founder Tom Scott, have not indicated that they’ll be turning themselves in at any point in the near future.


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