NY appeals court reinstates poker conviction

AP News
Posted: Aug 06, 2013 11:34 AM

NEW YORK (AP) — A federal appeals court in New York has reinstated the gambling conviction of a man who operated an underground poker club.

The 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan says Lawrence Dicristina should be sentenced for his conviction under a law created to stop organized crime from operating gambling dens.

Federal Judge Jack Weinstein in Brooklyn had tossed out the 2012 conviction. Weinstein had concluded that poker is more a game of skill than chance and therefore could not be prosecuted.

The court case dealt with traditional, face-to-face games of Texas Hold 'em. But Weinstein's ruling also was hailed as a victory by advocates trying to legalize Internet poker in the United States.

Dicristina's attorney did not immediately respond to a comment request.