For the second time in a matter of months, a former director of the now defunct Everleaf Gaming Ltd. has been arrested on the Mediterranean island of Malta, charged with misappropriation of approximately €800,000 in player funds.
Jean Pavili faces a whole host of charges including misappropriation of player funds, failing to pay his gaming license and tax, failing to notify the Lotteries and Gaming Authority of the relocation of the control system, failing to deposit winnings, and failing to disclose all ultimate beneficiaries to ensure that all are present and correct.
He has pleaded not guilty to all charges and has been allowed to post bail of €20,000, with the rather large caveat that his personal assets are frozen – all €900,000 of them.
Pavili’s fellow director, Michael Zwi Oros, was also arrested in September and faces the same array of charges. Oros pleaded not guilty to the vast majority of charges including the misappropriation of funds, but is believed to have owned up to a number of the other allegations.
The LGA took action and suspended Everleaf’s license on 26 July, 2013, a year after player complaints started to increase in volume. Former Everleaf players are not only searching for Everleaf blood – they aren’t particularly fond of the LGA – after the regulators went as far as to say that some of the initial player complaints were created by former affiliates of the online poker site and/or were fake.
The situation reached critical mass after Everleaf withdrew from the U.S market and made it increasingly difficult for U.S players to withdraw their funds. The site insisted that players hold a bank account outside of the U.S., or choose another method of withdrawing money that also required players to be beyond U.S. borders.
Disgruntled players have vowed to demonstrate against the inaction of the LGA during the ICE Totally Gaming event due to be held in London 3-5 Feb. 2014 where the LGA will have a stand.
The case continues.