In 2020, Flutter Entertainment acquired PokerStars from the Stars Group. The deal increased Flutter’s brands. However, it came with unexpected consequences worth $4 million. That was the amount the company paid after PokerStars settled with US SEC.
According to casino tutorials and news sites, the SEC uncovered that Stars Group paid third-party Russian consultants $8.9 million. The payments were to support the legalization of the card game in Russia. Also, the Stars Group made the payments between May 26, 2015 and May 15, 2020.
Based on the SEC report, the company did not have a system to control its internal account over its Russian operations. Also, the Stars Group gave out gifts to Russian government officials. In addition, they paid the Russian regulators who oversee the censorship filters of the internet in the country.
PokerStars Settled with US SEC
According to PPH bookie sources, the payments to third-party consultants violated the SEC Act of 1934. The good news is that the SEC and new PokerStars owner, Flutter, agreed to a cease-and-desist settlement. Although Flutter didn’t admit nor deny the allegations, the company agreed to pay a fine of $4 million.
The SEC acknowledged Flutter’s remedial action and welcomed the company’s cooperation. Moreover, Flutter withdrew from Russia after the invasion of Ukraine. It has already abandoned its Russian ambitions to open a sportsbook and poker site nationwide.
Flutter described the allegations as a legacy issue. It came before the company acquired the Stars Group. After it purchased the Stars Group, it made changes to ensure compliance with the laws.
In other gambling news, PokerStars announced the extension of its deal with Oracle Red Bull Racing in Formula 1. The announcement came in time for the start of the new season.