The Everleaf Gaming Network has refused an offer from a payment processor to reimburse American players whose accounts have been frozen since February following a cease and desist order issued by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
Third-party payment processor PICCLUB of Costa Rica, who has experience with facilitating financial transactions for the U.S. online poker marketplace, contacted Everleaf with the intent to help pay back U.S. players, but were rebuffed by Everleaf officials, it was reported by pokerfuse.
“I made an offer directly to their CFO,” said Chuck Kidd, a PICCLUB representative, “that if they wanted to pay U.S. players, they could use [our payment processing services].”
An Everleaf press release in March stated that “Everleaf reiterates and wants to reassure all the effected players that all the funds will be refunded in full and the effected parties will be contacted in a short while accordingly.” Since that time, Everleaf came up with three payment schemes for U.S. players to withdraw their funds–two of which are worthless and not logistically possible. Americans were given the choices of opening Moneybookers or Neteller accounts, online wallets that do not service the U.S. marketplace. The third option was to open a foreign bank account, which a handful of players have done in order to get their money, despite the hardship involved in such an endeavor.
Kidd, who believes Everleaf has no intention of reimbursing American players who don’t open an offshore bank account, also shed light on the approximately $27,000 that was seized by U.S. federal authorities from Causash, a reputed third-party payment processor working with Everleaf. It turns out that Causash is not a payment processor at all, but was merely an agent office controlled by Everleaf for the purpose of opening an international bank account.
Everleaf is a small network currently ranked 27th in player traffic by PokerScout. It lost about 25% of its players since being forced to leave the U.S. market and was sanctioned by the Malta Lotteries and Gaming Authority for “irregularities” in operating procedures. The exact amount of money owed to U.S. players is not known. It is undoubtedly a small fraction of the millions owed to Full Tilt and Absolute Poker players. However, the fact that a network would give U.S. players such a runaround in trying to get their money and then shun an offer to facilitate reimbursement does not bode well for U.S. players who happened to play there.
Unfortunately, U.S. players who continue to play at offshore poker sites in an unregulated industry are at risk of running into situations such as this with seemingly no recourse to obtain their account balances should the U.S. Department of Justice continue its assault on the online poker industry.