UB Scandal Saga-Last 12 Months; Hermosa Beach, CA

Roughly one year ago I signed with UB, and pledged to put in as much effort as was possible to do three things; 1) get the account names involved in the super-user scandal released, 2) get all the hand histories out to those who requested them during the cheating scandal, and 3) attempt to get out the physical names of the actual cheaters, and those who helped them cheat, released to the public…

We were able to accomplish #1 fairly quickly. #2 has proven more difficult for a number of data reasons on the Cereus network side. It seems there were many issues when the network was began and the old data/servers were migrated/changed/what have you. I have had many talks with Paul about this and he has offered to write a blog to attempt to clear up exactly what the issues are on the UB side in terms of this data. I appreciate this greatly as he understands those processes many times better than I ever could. I have been just as frustrated as many of you at how long this whole process has taken. It creates a picture that suggests that UB may be hiding something, when I don’t believe that to be the case. However, I live and work in LA, not Costa Rica, so in all honesty I can only do so much to move things along there. While I communicate and work with the team almost daily in some capacity, I can’t actually go and retrieve the data myself and I don’t face the same issues and problems that they do with doing so. That’s a mouthful, all leading to just saying that Paul will address why we have had some problems with hand histories in his own blog, and I’m hoping that will clarify the situation for many of you.

Even with those issues, I believe that we have gotten out upwards of 90% of old hand histories back to people who have requested them. At least those that have come across my desk. In most cases, the requests were legit and people have been great to work with. They have been frustrated, as I have, when we have hit snags, but generally understanding and overall very cool. There were many people who thought they might have been cheated, but more often then not the people who contacted me were just angry and wanted to vent. I completely understand that position and was more than happy to listen to them, as well as look into their cases. Most of these ended in dead ends though, obviously.

Now, #3 was always going to be more of a bitch, for several legal reasons. To say that the information was murky and many individuals who were directly involved would never talk to us is certainly an understatement. Nevertheless I believe that the poker community deserves some answers and some justice, in as much as that justice can be delivered. With that mindset I set about trying to put together what I could to make this a reality. I began working on a list, culled from many different sources. Some were at UB, some were outside of UB, people who knew the situations and knew the people involved. I always knew that I would need much outside help other than just sources for this story and thus once I had what I felt was a good list of people to work from, hopefully very close to the actual KGC list, then I went to where the intelligence was on this matter: the forums.

I quickly discovered that there was one main authority and that was “Mookman”, from the 2+2 community. I asked him to take the list that I had put together and add as much information as was possible, as well as add his own names to the list, which he did. He worked his ass off and did an incredible job putting the meat on this skeleton that I had brought to him. I finally felt that we had a solid list that we could do some investigating from. A lot of time passed here though and things didn’t move quite as quickly as I had hoped they would. I wanted to partner up with another site, as I felt that putting out the information from me or putting it out through PokerRoad.com was just too much of a conflict of interest. I wanted all of you to know that many hands were involved in this process, and it wasn’t just myself putting something together alone, and thus several third parties outside of UB have worked on the list and the story.

I approached several sites to run the story with me, but for various reasons they decided not to. Finally I sat down with the team over at WickedChopsPoker and we put together a plan to actually investigate the names on our list, talk to the people, reach out where we could to individuals from the past with all of this scandal, and just try and put something concrete down. WCP had already done quite a bit of their own investigating, including chasing Russ Hamilton down on camera a while back, so in many ways it was a continuation of some of the work they had already been familiar with. When I say “we” I really mean “they” here quite often. WCP has done an incredible job over the last 3 months of seeking people out, finding ways to talk to them, and piecing this whole thing together. I owe them an incredible debt in helping me to make this happen. None of us necessarily feels that our story is the final word in this matter, we do feel that we have taken it just about as far as we personally could, and also hope that more individuals come forward to fill in more pieces.

With that, probably most of you have read the posts on WCP and if you haven’t, you should:

Part I: http://wickedchopspoker.com/the-ultimatebet-super-user-scandal-part-i/

Part II: http://wickedchopspoker.com/the-ulti…matebet-super-user-cheating-scandal-part-ii/#more-8541

I know that many will not be won over by these names, this list, or this story that we have put out. Many will say that I am just part of some UB propaganda machine, and that it is all a snow job. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Now, the story may not be complete somehow, or we may have been lied to at some point along the way, but this story with these names is what we have found over the last 12 months of tireless work from many individuals. This story and these names are what I believe is the closest we will ever get to arriving at the truth in this scandal. I understand it’s not as sexy as everyone would like it to be. Many out there want us to name Phil Hellmuth, Annie Duke, and a whole host of other professional players who were involved in this cheating, but that’s just simply not what we found. I delved into the scandal with one singular goal, and that was to discover as much of the truth as was possible. I immediately became distrusting of two kinds of people: a) those that wanted to prove that UB was innocent and everything was perfect there now, and b) those that desperately wanted to vilify UB and condemn them moving forward. Both of those viewpoints seemed couterproductive to my quest to find the truth. With that said, the story presented is the reality as we have researched it and put it together.

To those that want more done in this matter, I simply say that I agree with you and would like to accomplish more. I wish we were a police force, but we are not. I wish we could really round up all of these people and interrogate them, but we can’t. I believe we did as much as we possibly could to this end though. I also wish we were a court and we could try them all and jail the convicted, but again, we cannot do this. The poker community would be a better place if we could, but as of right now this just isn’t possible. If it was, believe me, I would be working on it.

Finally, other than the big 3 goals mentioned above I also developed another final one; to see if there was anyone from either of the cheating scandals at UB and AP that was still involved in the company in any way. I have heard whispers, as well as yells, about former employees still being involved in the company who were also involved in the cheating scandals. I have researched them time and time again, spoken with countless sources, and spoken with the accusers and every time I have been unable to come up with any proof at all that any of those individuals are still with, or involved with the company in any way. At this point I am going to need a little more than just hearing from someone that one or more of those former cheaters are still at UB or AP. The time for talk has come to an end and the time for proof is now. To this day, I still haven’t seen anything pointing towards these accusations being true, other than “so and so said this” and “this person swears it”. Obviously, if there is real evidence, I would want to see it and the poker community needs to see it. That just simply hasn’t happened.

Personally, it has been a difficult road for me. I have had fans call me out personally as a cheater, and insinuate that I am now a cheating poker player. This couldn’t be further from the truth. While you could criticize my decision to join UB, but please always try and remember one thing: we are on the same side. We all are engaged in the search for truth, whatever that truth might be. Besides, if I was now a cheating poker player, don’t you think I would perhaps WIN a little more than I do? Ha. Sorry, had to…

I digress though. When I signed with UB I wanted to be a part of something moving forward. I knew that there was unfinished business from the past though to be dealt with and thus I set upon trying to handle that first. I believe that, as much as it can be done, we have done that. I don’t know any other way to make things right with the scandal from the past. I wasn’t there when it happened and I can’t provide those answers always, but I truly believe that we have done all that we can do here. I know a lot of you out there will never be satisfied and I commend you for your dedication. I really do. Something terrible happened and I understand anyone’s decision to never come back. I, however, think it is time to look to the future of UB, rather than continuing to live in the past.

With that said, I am excited to be able to hopefully close this chapter and move onto the next. Now, if anything else pops up I will be happy to get back into it and delve further, but as of right now, as of August 2010, I don’t see any deeper I can get into this scandal or any more we can do to close it. I think the next year or two are going to be the most exciting in UB’s history and I am happy to now turn my attention and focus towards that. I understand if many of you do not want to join along, but for those who are up for it, it’s going to be one hell of a ride…

Thank you to all of those who have put in time with me over the last year on this. I appreciate all of your efforts and am happy that we all wanted the same thing in the end: the truth.

On to bigger and better times…

peace,
J

PS- I just wanted to add that most of the people we have spoken with agree with this version of the scandal story. I have had some people come to me over and over saying that it isn’t true and there are so many things going on I am unaware of, and this and that. I have always said the same thing, “No problem. Just show me something, other than your word, or someone in the forums saying it is so, and I will immediately get into it”. They have never been able to actually show me a piece of proof. It is always just someone saying something. I need more than that at this point. If I ever do get more than that though, I promise you, I will reopen myself to the scandal all over again…