The Alderney Gaming Control Commission (AGCC) announced Wednesday the suspension of Full Tilt Poker’s gaming license, requiring the cessation of all operations including player withdrawals. Soon after the statement, Full Tilt’s poker room went offline.
The announcement, available on the AGCC website, follows an investigation by the commission spurred by the Black Friday indictments by the US Department of Justice.
“Grounds were found to indicate that [Full Tilt Poker] and their business associates were operating contrary to Alderney legislation,” it states. “The nature of the findings necessitated the taking of immediate action in the public interest.”
A hearing is scheduled for July 26 in London to review the suspension. Until then, Alderney demands that Full Tilt stop all poker play and cease to register new customers, accept deposits and permit withdrawals.
No statement has yet come from Full Tilt. At the time of writing their website is still live, and claims the room is down for “scheduled maintenance.”
Hours after the AGCC announcement, popular payment processor Moneybookers, currently rebranding as Skrill, notified all customers by email that no further deposits to FTP will be processed.
“There are extraordinary circumstances behind this situation which are beyond our control,” the email stated. “We will not comment on these, just take appropriate action that protects our customers.”
Alderney, in the British Channel Islands, is one of eight jurisdictions on the United Kingdom Remote Gambling Whitelist that permits its licensees to advertise freely in the UK. Over 100 online casinos, sportsbooks, bingo sites and poker rooms are licensed in Alderney, including PKR, Eurobet, Totesport, and Coral.
“PokerStars continues to demonstrate compliance”
Both PokerStars and their gaming commission in the Isle of Man – also on the UK whitelist – took the opportunity to issue official statements and distance themselves from Alderney and FTP.
“The Isle of Man Gambling Supervision Commission wishes to make it clear that the licensing status of PokerStars in the Isle of Man remains unchanged following today’s statement from the Gambling Control Commission in Alderney,”, the IoM press release states. “Alderney is a separate jurisdiction from the Isle of Man and the operation in question is separate from PokerStars.”
Unlicensed, Full Tilt Poker will struggle to continue serving their customers. Moneybookers has already pulled out, and other payment processors will follow if FTP tries to re-open their doors without a license in a recognised jurisdiction.
To apply for a new license, wait to hear their fate in July, or close their doors for good: until an official statement players can only wait to see how Full Tilt, choose to play their hand.