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888poker Closing Accounts of Relocated US Players?

A couple of days ago, a thread surfaced on 2+2 forums in which several players were complaining that their accounts with poker rooms that are part of the 888 network had suddenly been closed. Today, a few days later, there is only a bit more information available, as 888poker representatives seem either unwilling or unable to shed more light on the topic.

The closure of multiple accounts relates to players from Mexico and Canada only, but it is clearly not connected to territorial issues either, as 888 continues to offer their services in both countries and it is business as usual. It seems that the affected players are predominantly USA expats who decided to relocate in order to be able to play online poker.

All players who had their accounts closed received pretty much the same email message, which does not detail the reasons for taking these actions, but merely states that the decision has been made “to discontinue your membership with us” and asks players to “refrain from opening new accounts owned or operated by us.”

Many players did not find this kind of response satisfactory for obvious reasons, so they pressed further in hopes that they would be able to get an official statement from an 888 representative on the forum. The pressure did produce a statement, but its content was probably not what those affected by these decisions were hoping for.

We continuously monitor all 888poker accounts and activities and take steps accordingly. In the event you have received an email that you feel is an error, then please contact the support team and you will be answered in due course.

The lack of a proper response gave wings to speculation about what the reason could be for these events and some forum members have expressed their opinion that these closures could be linked to certain players using VPNs to access the poker clients. This would be in clear conflict with the sites’ TOS and that some accounts that were only guilty of receiving transfers from these players have also fallen victim in the process.

This is, of course, just a theory, as no one can be certain until such a time that 888 decides to offer a proper explanation. In the meantime, it seems that some of the Mexican accounts of players who are not exiled US citizens have been affected as well, but the events are restricted only to certain parts of that country, including the cities of Playa Del Carmen and Cancun.

Affected players are now naturally on their toes, as 888 is one of the companies that also offers online games in the USA and this could potentially mean that they will not be able to open accounts with them back home once online poker is regulated throughout the country.

The brighter side of the story is that it appears that none of the players lost their balances in the closure process and they have either received or will be receiving the full amounts of their account balances. We’ll stay on top of the situation as it develops and keep you informed about new developments when they occur.

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Ivan Potocki

Ivan is an aspiring journalist writer from Bosnia and Herzegovina. With a degree in English Literature and a fiery work ethic, Ivan adds a dynamic and flexible element to the PokerUpdate writing staff.