More light has been shed on Friday’s announced demise of Bitcoin poker site SealsWithClubs (SwC). On Saturday, SwC chairman Bryan Micon (pictured, in skivvies) posted a video to YouTube revealing that his Nevada home was raided on Feb. 11 by gun-toting agents armed with a search warrant issued by the Nevada Gaming Commission (NGC) “regarding SwC and Bitcoin poker.”
In the video (viewable below), Micon said he was handcuffed and led out of his house in his underwear while a “bunch of guys with guns” searched his house for eight hours and ultimately “stole most of my electronics.”
Micon maintains that he doesn’t believe he was “doing anything unethical” and says he wasn’t arrested or charged with any crime. Micon said the agents who conducted the raid “made it clear that they were very familiar with my social feeds and my entire output as a journalist.”
Micon noted that SwC cashouts were processing as promised and all Bitcoin funds were safe. As Micon put it: “Math does not bow down to guns.”
The timing of the raid coincides with the start of the events that SwC’s Friday announcement said led to the site’s “perpetual state of jeopardy.” Micon said there’d also been “an irregularity” with one of SwC’s data servers hosted by Voxility in Romania, although Micon said it was unclear to him what had transpired from a technical perspective.
The rest of SwC’s management team decided to quit but Micon has vowed to carry on. Micon has assembled a team that is “working extremely hard” to get the new swcpoker.eu domain up and running with the new SwC 2.0 software.
Micon made the announcement from his new base of operations in Antigua. Micon said he’d been planning a family trip to Antigua long before the raid but the developments prompted him to make the move permanent. Micon said he didn’t want his two-year-old daughter to grow up “in a police state where creativity is often met with guns and handcuffs and whatnot.”
The NGC’s targeting of SwC may have something to do with Nevada’s underperforming regulated online poker market, which hit a record low revenue figure of $641k in November, the last month for which figures are available. The mid-November withdrawal of Ultimate Gaming means the number of Nevada-licensed operators has fallen to two and thus the NGC has stopped reporting revenue figures.