Howard Lederer, formerly a member on the Full Tilt Poker board, signed a settlement deal with the US federal government.
Lederer was one of the four members on Full Tilt Poker’s board of directors, who were named in the amendment of a civil complaint filed by the US federal government, seeking forfeiture of $42.5 million allegedly received by Lederer from Full Tilt Poker. The US attorney for the Southern District of New York had accused Full Tilt Poker of being a “massive Ponzi scheme” that had cheated players of around $330 million.
A second amended civil complaint was filed against Lederer and four others this September, seeking to forfeit assets purchased with funds obtained through illegal means. The complaint furnished details of Lederer’s expenses from 2006 – 11 and supplied documents to prove that Lederer had used illegal money to make mortgage payments, pay property tax, and purchase vehicles. Since Lederer used Full Tilt Poker money to make these purchases, the US government sought to forfeit $42.5 million from him. Denying the charges, Lederer appealed to the court to dismiss them on Nov 15, 2012.
However, he signed a settlement deal recently, under the terms of which, he contended that
FTP was a legitimate business providing services to its customers within the bounds of the law, and that prior to April 15, 2011, he was unaware of any wrongful activity at Full Tilt including that the company had become unable to satisfy its player account liabilities.
He has also not pleaded guilty to any of the charges.
According to the terms of the deal, Lederer will forfeit his 1965 Shelby Cobra Roadster and funds in his Lloyds TSB International account. He has also agreed to liquidate all the funds in his other Lloyds accounts, which contain around US$168,000. Moreover, he will forfeit his accounts in LPL Financial, including his 401K account, and all funds generated through the sale of his property at Las Vegas, besides paying a fine of $1.25 million.
Some of Lederer’s properties, such as three Wells Fargo accounts and a California property, which were mentioned in the second amended complaint against Full Tilt Poker directors, were not mentioned in the settlement deal. Rafe Furst was the first defendant to settle his civil case with the US government, and Chris Ferguson is now in the process of negotiating with the government. The only case that is still pending is Ray Bitar’s.