Borgata Finally Settles $10M Edge-Sorting Case With Phil Ivey
A long-standing legal saga involving Poker Hall of Famer Phil Ivey and the Borgata Casino in Atlantic City, New Jersey is nearing an end.
Both parties have now agreed to a settlement, the latest development in the ongoing legal war which could now be finally over after six long years.
Back in 2014, Ivey and his gambling partner Kelly Sun were sued by Borgata for fraud, racketeering, unjust enrichment, and civil conspiracy stemming from massive winnings that the pair amassed using a technique known as “edge sorting“.
The practice involves identifying unintentional manufacturing defects on the backs of cards and exploiting them to gain a significant advantage against an opponent.
By employing the technique, Ivey and Sun were able to rack up $9.6 million in winnings from Borgata while playing baccarat, a game in which the casino normally enjoys an estimated 1% edge over players.
The duo won a series of baccarat sessions in 2012 at the Borgata casino using the edge-sorting technique, initially without the knowledge of the casino. After two years, Borgata filed a suit and in 2016 the judge presiding over the case ruled against the pair and ordered them to repay over $10 million, including craps winnings.
The gambling duo took the case to the Third Circuit in 2018. But both had not been able to return the money and Borgata continued to chase Ivey’s assets, even seizing his 2019 WSOP winnings. While it appeared like Ivey was the loser in the legal battle, the poker pro was working hard in the background, pursuing his appeal. Now, there have been reports Ivey is enjoying quite an advantage in the appeals process, which could see the court ultimately deciding in his favor.
Based on the latest court filing in the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, the parties have agreed to a settlement, after being referred to the court’s mediation program. While the complete details have not been disclosed, there had been reports it wasn’t a very good picture for Borgata.
It has been assumed that Borgata had agreed to the settlement because if they lost the appeal, it could set a dangerous precedent for future cheating or advantage casino cases involving parent company MGM Resorts.
Once the legal saga is officially declared over, Ivey can now return playing poker in the US, a territory he has avoided for several years due to the pending case.