Former 888 sponsored pro, and World Series of Poker Bracelet holder, Darren Woods, has appeared at Sheffield Crown Court over allegations of fraudulent play on unnamed online poker accounts between January 2007 and January 2012.
Former 888 sponsored pro, PokerStrategy Limit Hold’em coach, and World Series of Poker (WSOP) bracelet winner, Darren Woods, has appeared in Sheffield Crown Court on charges of alleged fraudulent activity on several unnamed online poker accounts.
In 2011, Woods topped a WSOP final table that included Gabriel Nassif and Richard Lyndaker, to take the first prize of $213,431, and the piece of wrist candy that every professional poker player covets.
At the time, Woods was a sponsored player at 888Poker, a well respected Limit Hold’em coach at PokerStrategy, and an affiliate for both sites. In Dec 2011, a 2+2 poster, known as ‘feruell’ posted a long and detailed post accusing Woods of collusion on both 888Poker and iPoker.
In the aforementioned post ‘feruell’ and a group of 888Poker regulars, in the fast fold games, believed that Woods “known as Dooshcom on 888Poker” colluded with an account called ‘Benkaremail’, and also under the pseudonyms ‘Dingdonk1984’ and ‘Salamdolphie’ on iPoker. The group forwarded their evidence to the 888Poker and iPoker fraud departments; the 888Poker account was frozen, and there ended the communication between the parties.
Several years on and The Grimsby Telegraph have reported that Woods, and his Iranian father Morteza Gharoon; have been taking the stand at Sheffield Crown Court accused of trying to fix online poker games through collusion and multi-accounting.
So far, 29-year old Woods, and 56-year old Gharoon, have denied 13 fraud offences that allegedly took place between Jan 2007 and Jan 2012.
Most of the feedback that’s emanating from the courts seems to focus on the testimony of Woods’s father, who has so far admitting giving his son false documents, so he could open up false online poker accounts, but never believed he was doing anything illegal.
It’s not known whether Woods is being charged with rigging the actual games that he played in, or if he is being charged with opening false accounts to claim £147,266 in fraudulent affiliate income, earned through using other people’s identities.
According to the Grimsby Telegraph, Prosecutor Alasdair Campbell said, “Woods admitted opening a number of different accounts in other people’s names but denied that he acted dishonestly in any way or that he opened them with a dishonest intention to make a financial gain for himself.”
The only online poker organization that has so far been named in the scant information that has reached the press is Boylesports.
The case continues.