Mike Postle Voluntarily Drops $330M Defamation Lawsuit
Back in November 2020, alleged poker cheat Mike Postle sued some of poker’s biggest names for destroying his career and reputation.
Postle was the main subject of a massive cheating scandal which erupted in 2019, involving livestreamed cash games at California poker room Stones Gambling Hall.
The scandal led to a multi-million lawsuit filed by dozens of players, but a US district judge ultimately dismissed the case citing California law.
Postle fought back by launching a $330 million libel suit against whistleblower Veronica Brill, Joey Ingram, Daniel Negreanu, Todd Witteles and many others, accusing them of spreading “baseless and defamatory” statements against him.
However on April 1, Postle filed a motion to drop the defamation lawsuit which was ultimately granted by the Superior Court of California, County of Sacramento. But this doesn’t leave him off the hook in relation to the anti-SLAPP (Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation) motions filed by the parties he sued.
While Postle voluntarily dropped the case, he will still be liable for the legal fees incurred by some of the defendants. Brill and Witteles were the only defendants who actively responded to Postle’s defamation lawsuit by filing their respective anti-SLAPP motions, which are still ongoing and due for hearing. Anti-SLAPP laws are designed to protect people from frivolous claims in relation to exercising their free speech.
According to Marc J. Randazza, Brill’s attorney, Postle automatically loses the anti-SLAPP motion by dropping his own libel suit. Witteles’ lawyer Eric Bensamochan also stated that his client intends to seek a ruling on the anti-SLAPP motion to recover “substantial” legal fees. This means Postle could be ordered to pay attorney’s fees, probably amounting to tens of thousands of dollars.
Defamation Lawsuit Bound to Fail
Postle encountered many challenges in his defamation lawsuit early on. His original lawyer, Steven T. Lowe of Lowe & Associates, dropped him as client due to lack of communication and breach of contract between him and the law firm, something which reportedly stemmed from Postle’s failure to pay legal fees. Postle hit back at Lowe, saying the lawyer had no relevant experience in online defamation law.
With Lowe’s withdrawal from the case, Postle had to hire a new lawyer or proceed with his case without a legal counsel. During the case’s last hearing in mid-March, Postle claimed he would have a new counsel after a week, but that did not materialize. This could have pushed Postle to drop the case completely.