Two Poker Players “Extra Activities” Get Them Jail Time
Poker pros Ali Fazeli and Micah Raskin play poker to make a living but they have shown in the past that they like meddling with ‘extra activities’ to bring in more money.
The two players had previously been in trouble with the law and now it looks like they will be spending quite some time behind prison bars.
The Canadian player Fazeli was sentenced to 18 months in jail for operating a massive scam that victimized some high-rollers, while Raskin will spend a minimum of five years in prison after pleading guilty to charges that date back to February 2018.
Fazeli Admits to Wire-Fraud Crime
Ali Fazeli was often seen engaging in high action at the ARIA $25,000 High Roller series. However, it seems he was doing more than just playing poker as he was using his connections there to run a high-ticket scam.
The poker pro set up a sports-ticket reselling company named Summit Entertainment under which he operated a scam that ran from 2015 to 2016. Among well-known high rollers who fell victim to the fraudulent money-making scheme were Erik Seidel, Zachary Clark and John Juanda.
Fazeli collected more than $6 million from his victims, $1 million of that amount came from Seidel and Clark (each reportedly invested $500,000). Between November 2015 and December 2016, at the height of Fazeli’s scam, he was actively playing at ARIA events, earning 7 six-figure scores which helped him cash in around $2 million. His previous tournament earnings were exclusively from mid-stakes events that fall under $1,500.
In July, Fazeli admitted to one count of wire-fraud felony in California and received an 18-month jail sentence. He was also slapped with a $7.5 million restitution order. Investors may soon lodge civil suits against Fazeli while ARIA is also seeking compensation for unpaid casino markers.
Raskin Pleads Guilty to Marijuana Trafficking
In February 2018, Raskin was involved in a series of violence and misdemeanor incidents that led to his arrest. After that, a raid on his property yielded a drug stash that included 358 pounds of marijuana, paraphernalia, hash oils, vehicles and weapons that amounted to nearly $1 million.
The New York player was tagged by authorities as the supplier of massive amounts of hash oils and marijuana to the Baltimore area. Micah Raskin, who has $2 million in tournament cashes, pleaded guilty to trafficking hundreds of pounds of marijuana. He also admitted to one count of conspiracy to distribute the illegal substance that will result in a five-year mandatory minimum sentence.