Indicted independent payment processor Chad Elie has split with his lawyers in favor of a new set ahead of his trial date. According to eGR, Elie, who stands accused alongside John Campos, has replaced William Cowden LLC with Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel LLP. Early reports that he simply wanted a firm with a name that’ll be harder to pronounce in court are yet to be confirmed and it’s otherwise unclear as to why the move has been made.
Three attorneys – Barry H. Berke, Dani R. James and Jade A. Burns, filed notice of appearance in the United States v PokerStars et al case yesterday, with a statement saying: “Mr Elie has requested that Kramer Levin represent him in his action and has consented to the withdrawal of William Cowden.”
Elie’s response to the charges is expected on January 23 after he and Campos filed a motion to dismiss in October. This was thrown out in December by Federal judge Lewis Kaplan who commented it was “extraordinary unlikely that the entire indictment will be dismissed.”
The case originates from the original Black Friday indictments with Elie standing accused of assisting online poker companies processing payments to and from US players. Campos’s attorney tried to persuade Kaplan the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA) takes the blame away from ISPs if US players use their lines to access gambling sites. That was before the assistant US Attorney Arlo Devlin-Brown told Kaplan it didn’t apply to companies that knowingly processed gambling payments.
Elie’s trial, along with that of Campos, is set to commence on March 12 and there’s a long way to run until this one plays out in its entirety. In our periodical “for the ladies” update, we’ve enclosed a picture of what Chad looked like back in April. Enjoy…