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Former PokerStars employee admits charges

A Canadian man who's a former head of payment processing for Manx-based Pokerstars and its arch rival Full Tilt Poker has pleaded guilty to deceiving banks.

Forty-one-year-old Nelson Burtnick admitted taking part in a scheme to fool banks into handling online gambling transactions which broke American law.

In court in New York this week, he told Judge Gabriel Gorenstein American banks would have refused to process the payments, saying he’d had to carry out the deception to cater for US players.

Burtnick added he knew he was doing had been wrong.

The trial came about after a law passed in 2006 forbade banks from processing payments to gambling websites.

Prosecutors said after the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act came into force, sites including PokerStars worked to circumvent it.

Burtnick admitted conspiracy to commit unlawful internet gambling, bank fraud, money laundering and gambling offenses.

He could face a prison term as long as 15 years when he’s sentenced – however, no date for his sentencing was set by the court.

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