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  • Player to Serve Jail Time After Threatening Staff of Online Poker Room

    Sunday, October 16th, 2011 by Ryan

It’s not any shocking news to hear about an online poker player who gets upset about how he’s running or how the cards are falling at any specific time. This story goes just a bit further than that though. Apparently one player from the United Kingdom got just a bit too fired up about the way he was running, and will now be serving jail time after he decided to threaten the customer service staff of an online poker room.

The player’s name is Michael Gallagher, who is currently unemployed and plays quite a bit of online poker. Gallagher is 35 years old and is from East Cleveland. Basically what happens with an online poker room is that their is a Random Number Generator (RNG) used to decide what cards come out next and which cards are dealt to each player at the table. The problem though, is that Gallagher was not very happy about how the RNG at the online poker room (which was not named) was treating him. The problem may have been that Gallagher was on a cold streak, and just wasn’t able to hit any cards; but he also has apparently had quite a bad year as well.

Apparently in almost a full year of play, from June 2010 to May 2011, it was reported that Gallagher had lost between £15,000 and £20,000 at just that single online poker room. The player then decided that he was going to contact the site about how some of his hands had played out (ones that he had lost), and when the customer service didn’t really have to much to say about it, and didn’t have answers that he wanted to hear; he decided to make a few statements that got him in just a bit of trouble. He sent an email that featured some incriminating comments, and ended up causing quite a few issues.

The email first started off with him stating that he demanded that the online poker site pay him $50,000 for the “dealing discrepancies”. He then went on to make it even worse by saying that if he was not paid that he would travel to where the company held its headquarters, and “blow the f******” brains out of every single person who crosses his path”. Gallagher went on to say that he had been planning this and that he should be taken seriously. He also went on to say that he would “happily” take a life sentence for it. This obviously did not go over well with the online poker site, who is run very close to where the email was sent from.

Gallagher sent an email again the following morning apologizing for the email and stating that he had been on a drinking binge which had caused the explosion. This was a bit too late though, as the British authorities came to arrest him later that same day, and charged him with blackmail. Gallagher went on to spend months in jail, before the case was finally heard just this past week. He decided to plead guilty to a lesser offense than what he was originally accused of, and the maximum punishment for this is six months of jail time.

This was apparently a good move though, as the Judge did indeed give him the full six months; but if he had been held under the blackmail charges, he could have gotten up to fourteen total years in jail. His lawyer attempted to defend him, but the Judge stated that the fact that he was affected by a drink was “no excuse”.

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