Chad Elie Returns to Poker Scene, Civil Lawsuit Still Ongoing
It’s been a big ten days or so for convicted online-poker payment processor Chad Elie, who was released from a California federal prison camp on June 26th after serving the mandatory 85% of a six-month sentence he received in his “Black Friday” plea deal.
Elie quickly Tweeted “I’m bacccccckkkk!” to his 2,200 Twitter followers, then followed it up with unexpected news: he’s been signed to an endorsement deal at a small site called Attack Poker, and is playing the ongoing WSOP Main Event wearing Attack gear, along with the site’s four other endorsers — Eli Elezra (who just won a bracelet), Billy Baxter, Lisa Hamilton and Luke Schwartz.
Attack Poker’s page now listing Elie as an endorser refers to him as “Black Friday Defendant” and “Poker Activist”, and it’s an interesting twist in the ongoing Elie saga. Whether or not Chad Elie actually knows how to play high-level poker isn’t even the story; it’s that Elie’s been put into the WSOP Main fresh out of prison by a fledgling site that most people have never heard of. Attack Poker is one of those free-play for prizes sites that have been popping up now and then for the last several years, and it remains to be seen whether they have any staying power.
Funny thing, this Attack Poker / WSOP sponsorship story isn’t even the only Chad Elie tale of interest currently in the news.
Three weeks ago, we checked in on Elie’s ongoing civil lawsuit against prominent gaming attorney A. Jeff Ifrah, who has represented Full Tilt and PokerStars in various legal matters, in particular in matters connected to the US market. Through a strange sequence of events we explored here in an earlier three-part series, Ifrah also came to represent Elie in a couple of other legal matters after having once chased Elie into court for $4 million gone missing from a California bank account in Elie’s control, used for poker processing.
Weird stuff all around. Three years later, Elie was serving his six months (less time off for good behavior) and filing a malpractice action against Ifrah from his prison cell, in which Elie alleged that Ifrah withheld key legal advice regarding the proposed online-poker processing, and the allegation that Ifrah himself was a secret government witness in the DOJ’s Black Friday case.
Ifrah issued a heated response three weeks ago — which is that first link above, which among other things, included Ifrah’s attorneys referring to Elie as a “confirmed liar” and introducing the complete text of Elie’s plea deal hearing as evidence that Elie essentially waived any claims he might have had against Ifrah.
FlushDraw has since obtained a copy of that appendix and will soon publish several of the highlights from that hearing, which make for interesting legal reading. The topics discussed stretched considerably beyond the sentence eventually conferred upon Elie, and shed quite a bit more light on the embattled Elie/Ifrah relationship.