Ivey Ordered to Pay Borgata $10.1m in Winnings Because Edge-Sorting

Published on 19 December 2016 by Pokerlistings 830
The latest development in a court case that started in 2014 sees professional poker player Phil Ivey and gambling partner Cheng Yin Sun ordered to pay back $10.1 million in baccarat winnings from four high-stakes sessions in 2012. The Borgata brought the lawsuit against Ivey and Sun more than two years ago, claiming the pair had used an advantage technique called edge-sorting to turn the odds at the baccarat table in their favor. Ivey admitted to edge-sorting but claimed that it was within the rules of the game. The Borgata, however, argued that the two had taked advantage of a manufacturing defect in the playing cards and had in fact breached New Jersey state gambling laws. US District Court Judge Noel Hillman agreed. Ivey and Sun were ordered to pay a total of $10.1 million, which includes their original winnings plus interest. Hillman further ruled that Ivey and Sun would not be forced to pay back the roughly $250,000 in casino comps they received as a result of the high-stakes gambling in 2012. Ivey's attorney Ed Jacobs said they will be appealing the decision.

US District Court Judge Noel Hillman just ordered Phil Ivey to give back over $10 million he won playing Baccarat over four visits to the Borgata Casino in New Jersey in 2012.

The case started in 2014 when the Borgata accused Ivey and his gambling partner Cheng Yin Sun of using a technique called “edge-sorting” to turn the odds in their favor.

That's when a player notices irregularities in the printing on the backs of the cards and uses that information to track cards even when they're face-down.

Ivey, who's better known as one of the world's most successful poker players, admitted that he was edge-sorting but argued that he hadn't broken the rules of the game and should therefore be allowed to keep the roughly $9.6 million he won.

People in the poker community agreed with him and Daniel Negreanu tweeted: “I've been hustled before, but the idea of not paying was never even a consideration! Borgata- you got hustled bad. Get over it already.”

The Borgata's lawsuit, however, said Ivey and Sun had in fact broken New Jersey state gambling laws by taking advantage of a manufacturing defect in the pattern printed on the back of the cards.

Judge Hillman agreed with the Borgata in a ruling last October and this week ordered Ivey and Cheng to pay the New Jersey Casino $10.1 million, their total winnings plus interest.

But, the Judge also ruled that Ivey and Sun will not have to repay the roughly $250,000 in comps they received as a result of their high-stakes gambling sessions in 2012.

Ivey's lawyer Ed Jacobs said "What this ruling says is a player is prohibited from combining his skill, intellect and visual acuity to beat the casino at its own game.”

Jacobs also said they will appeal the decision soon.

This news comes on the heels of Ivey losing his appeal in a similar case against Crockford's Club in the UK.

The London casino refused to pay Ivey and Sun 7.7 million pounds they won playing Baccarat on the grounds they were edge-sorting.

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