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News on scam sports betting operations, events and business deals within the offshore sports gambling industry.

Matchbook update

06.30.2011


Former US-based Matchbook (SBR rating B) players have confirmed receiving $289,621 in payouts since May of 2011. Matchbook withdrew from the US market on February 27th, 2011 following an ownership change. Matchbook's new owners wished to cater its services to European and Asian markets.

Matchbook executives tell SBR that thousands of transactions have been made to US-based players following the February withdrawal. Some setbacks were encountered as a result of the volume of banking transactions to the United States. SBR has no record of outstanding withdrawals, however Matchbook has indicated that a small percentage of players in a unique predicament have not been able to take advantage of some withdrawal methods offered to the majority. SBR asks former Matchbook players with any concerns or payout inquiries to write to help@sportsbookreview.com.

06.29.2011


The Alderney Gambling Control Commission (AGCC) ordered the suspension of Full Tilt Poker's operating license. Full Tilt Poker executives must attend a hearing on July 26th to discuss the state of their license with AGCC. As part of the suspension order, AGCC has demanded that Full Tilt Poker immediately cease player registration, deposits and withdrawals, and game-play. Whilst Full Tilt's website remains accessible, the downloadable poker client times out and fails to allow players to access the gaming lobby. Player reports indicate that play was abruptly stopped today at approximately 6:30AM EDT.

On April 15th, 2011, Full Tilt Poker, Poker Stars, and Absolute Poker announced a US-market exit following indictments by the US Attorney General's office in the Southern Distict of New York. Of the companies which pulled out, Poker Stars has shown the most resiliance - continuing to operate in accepted markets, and not stalling in paying its existing US player base. Absolute Poker—a Costa Rican based poker site—had its office raided by US authorities and was forced to shutdown its entire operation. On May 11th, 2011, Absolute Poker vowed to return US player funds, following a legal agreement struck with NY Attorney General Preet Bhara.

Full Tilt's solvency was a particular cause for concern following the April 15th, 'Black Friday' online poker shutdown. Numerous reports circulated indicating that FTP failed to honor withdrawals for even non-US customers, as well as an alleged report from its featured poker player 'Phil Ivey', where the player non-payments were further spotlighted. | Alderney Gambling Control Commission official statement

BetIslands & ABC Islands experiencing website difficulties

06.29.2011


UPDATE — All sites are back online.

The Jazz Sports building, which hosts a number of sportsbooks including BetIslands (SBR rating C+), ABC Islands (SBR rating C-), and Jazz Sports (SBR rating C-) is again experiencing technical difficulties. On June 14th, 2011, SBR reported that the building suffered a power outage and all sportsbooks were temporarily off-line. Today, sportsbook players are redirected to backup sites when attempting to access each sportsbook homepage.

SBR will update this report.

BetIslands & ABC Islands experiencing website difficulties

06.29.2011


UPDATE — All sites are back online.

The Jazz Sports building, which hosts a number of sportsbooks including BetIslands (SBR rating C+), ABC Islands (SBR rating C-), and Jazz Sports (SBR rating C-) is again experiencing technical difficulties. On June 14th, 2011, SBR reported that the building suffered a power outage and all sportsbooks were temporarily off-line. Today, sportsbook players are redirected to backup sites when attempting to access each sportsbook homepage.

SBR will update this report.

BetIslands & ABC Islands experiencing website difficulties

06.29.2011


UPDATE — All sites are back online.

The Jazz Sports building, which hosts a number of sportsbooks including BetIslands (SBR rating C+), ABC Islands (SBR rating C-), and Jazz Sports (SBR rating C-) is again experiencing technical difficulties. On June 14th, 2011, SBR reported that the building suffered a power outage and all sportsbooks were temporarily off-line. Today, sportsbook players are redirected to backup sites when attempting to access each sportsbook homepage.

SBR will update this report.

BetIslands & ABC Islands experiencing website difficulties

06.29.2011


UPDATE — All sites are back online.

The Jazz Sports building, which hosts a number of sportsbooks including BetIslands (SBR rating C+), ABC Islands (SBR rating C-), and Jazz Sports (SBR rating C-) is again experiencing technical difficulties. On June 14th, 2011, SBR reported that the building suffered a power outage and all sportsbooks were temporarily off-line. Today, sportsbook players are redirected to backup sites when attempting to access each sportsbook homepage.

SBR will update this report.

06.28.2011


A Bet33 (SBR rating D+) player reports payment.

The Bet33 player tells SBR that following a $500 deposit, he increased his balance to $5,000 after making forty MLB picks. On June 27th, the player tells Sportsbook Review that he requested and was paid a $3,000 withdrawal via cash transfer. Bet33 was recently removed from SBR's sportsbook blacklist after settling player debt which originated from Apex Sportsbook in 2005.

Players with Bet33 feedback are asked to write to SBR.

06.27.2011

Prior to PartyGaming's merge with Bwin, PartyGaming refused to cooperate with SBR citing data protection laws. PartyGaming would provide only cursory background of complaints, unable to share specific evidence with SBR in support of its conclusions. After the PartyGaming/Bwin merger, the consolidated company began to address all sportsbook disputes in a prompt and fair manner.

Costa Rican scammers look to profit from industry shakeup

06.26.2011


Sportsbook Review has learned that at least two readers received phone calls demanding payment from alleged Costa Rican attorneys. The scammers attempted to piggyback off the recent BetEd closure, claiming that the players had to pay a penalty imposed by the CR government for depositing into the sportsbook. A measley $787 was requested from one player. The scammers threatened that if payment was not received, the players information would be made available to United States authorities.

It is not uncommon for mailing lists to be sold by rogue sportsbook employees, or for an employee gone bad to pocket customer data to setup a scam. Players are urged not to engage in any transactions with third-parties that claim they are attorneys or Costa Rican authorities - these are scams.

The only relevant federal law with respect to online gambling is the UIGEA bill passed in 2006, which makes it illegal for banks to knowingly process online gambling transactions. A player funding or making bets with a sportsbook is not covered in this bill. Players with any concerns over the legality or tax requirements of online wagering should seek legal council. 

Congrats SBRforum WSOP Main Event freeroll winner

06.25.2011


SBRforum poster ''FuzzyDunlop'' finished 1st place in this afternoon's SBR WSOP Main Event freeroll finale. The lucky winner bested a field of 308 contestants, and will be receiving an all-expense paid trip to sunny Las Vegas, Nevada on July 5th, 2011. Fuzzy will be provided with lodging for week one of the WSOP tournament as well as the $10,000 entry. Stay tuned for updates on Fuzzy's progress!

BetIslands sportsbook feedback

06.21.2011


BetIslands sportsbook (SBR rating C+) players have submitted positive feedback in forum topic, 'BetIslands Sportsbook'. Players have commented that the Costa-Rica based sportsbook has extended good customer service and prompt payouts since coming under new ownership, and being assessed with a sportsbook rating earlier this year.

BetIslands is run by Jon Kreta— the former manager of WagerChief (SBR rating B-)—and is stationed in the Jazz Sports Group facility. Jazz provides BetIslands with hosting, wagering and IT support. BetIslands processing is run independentantly -- SBR has confirmed that BetIslands is backed by established bookmakers. BetIslands rating has been increased to C+.

BetIslands sportsbook feedback

06.21.2011


BetIslands sportsbook (SBR rating C+) players have submitted positive feedback in forum topic, 'BetIslands Sportsbook'. Players have commented that the Costa-Rica based sportsbook has extended good customer service and prompt payouts since coming under new ownership, and being assessed with a sportsbook rating earlier this year.

BetIslands is run by Jon Kreta— the former manager of WagerChief (SBR rating B-)—and is stationed in the Jazz Sports Group facility. Jazz provides BetIslands with hosting, wagering and IT support. BetIslands processing is run independentantly -- SBR has confirmed that BetIslands is backed by established bookmakers. BetIslands rating has been increased to C+.

BetIslands sportsbook feedback

06.21.2011


BetIslands sportsbook (SBR rating C+) players have submitted positive feedback in forum topic, 'BetIslands Sportsbook'. Players have commented that the Costa-Rica based sportsbook has extended good customer service and prompt payouts since coming under new ownership, and being assessed with a sportsbook rating earlier this year.

BetIslands is run by Jon Kreta— the former manager of WagerChief (SBR rating B-)—and is stationed in the Jazz Sports Group facility. Jazz provides BetIslands with hosting, wagering and IT support. BetIslands processing is run independentantly -- SBR has confirmed that BetIslands is backed by established bookmakers. BetIslands rating has been increased to C+.

BetIslands sportsbook feedback

06.21.2011


BetIslands sportsbook (SBR rating C+) players have submitted positive feedback in forum topic, 'BetIslands Sportsbook'. Players have commented that the Costa-Rica based sportsbook has extended good customer service and prompt payouts since coming under new ownership, and being assessed with a sportsbook rating earlier this year.

BetIslands is run by Jon Kreta— the former manager of WagerChief (SBR rating B-)—and is stationed in the Jazz Sports Group facility. Jazz provides BetIslands with hosting, wagering and IT support. BetIslands processing is run independentantly -- SBR has confirmed that BetIslands is backed by established bookmakers. BetIslands rating has been increased to C+.

06.20.2011


BetEagle (SBR rating D+) is the latest sportsbook to change its domain extension to .ag. Online sportsbook operators concerned over the status of .com domains are now rolling out .eu, .ag, .cr extensions as these addresses are believed to be beyond the reach of legal authorities. | BetEagle notice

WSOP Satellites - Win a trip to the Main Event, final week of competition!

06.19.2011


Win a seat to the 2011 World Series of Poker main event at SBRforum! Over 400 SBRforum posters have already qualified to compete in a grand satellite freeroll on Saturday, June 25th, where the winner pockets a $10,000 value ticket entry to the 2011 World Series of Poker. Swing by SBRforum to have a chance to qualify during the final week of competition! View the Free WSOP Satellite thread for more details.

06.18.2011


WSEX Sportsbook (SBR rating D-) update.

WSEX is currently slow-paying its users $494,018. The payout requests range from October 2009 to May 2011. WSEX has provided generic updates to players throughout its downswing—where its rating was adjusted nine times—pinning the delays on their processors. | WSEX player reports payment

06.16.2011

Swedish bookmaker Betsson (SBR rating B-) has officially acquired Betsafe. Betsafe—a Malta-based operator—held a rating of C in the SBR sportsbook ratings guide. Betsson reportedly spent €32.5m in acquiring all shares of Betsafe (corporate name Artic Invest SA). As part of the deal Betsafe will also receive future payments during 2011, which amount to a revenue share relative to the development and growth of the Betsafe base.