Full Tilt chief Bitar arrested in NYC
Full Tilt Poker's chief executive and founder Ray Bitar has been arrested in New York as the US government unveiled new criminal charges against him related to an alleged Ponzi scheme. He pleaded not guilty in a hearing at the Manhattan federal court, and will be out on bail after posting a $2.5m bond.
In court documents, the US government alleged that Bitar and an employee had committed 'wire fraud by misrepresenting to potential customers that their funds would be safe in order to convince them to transfer money to the company'. It said that the company also used a Ponzi scheme to 'enrich Full Tilt owners' — mainly a group of professional poker players—while covering up financial problems at the company.
Bitar had been staying in Ireland to try to negotiate a possible resolution for his company, but decided to return to face charges because his part in that effort is now complete, his attorneys said in court Monday.