BELLAGIO CHIP THIEF ARRESTED
The down-on-his-luck son of a Las Vegas municipal judge was arrested February 2, alleged to be the motorcycle-riding robber who burst into the Bellagio, brandished a pistol, and fled with approximately $1.5 million in casino chips grabbed from a craps table. Anthony Corleo, 29, has been accused of armed robbery and is also a suspect in at least one other Las Vegas casino heist. Corleo, formerly of Pueblo, Colorado, declared bankruptcy in 2009 after running failed disk-jockey and limo-service businesses, and moved in with his father, George Assad, a controversial Las Vegas judge.
Authorities arrested Corleo at the Bellagio, the scene of the crime, where he had returned with at least some of his ill-obtained chips in an attempt to launder them to other buyers, some of whom turned out to be undercover officers.
GORR CAPTURES AUSSIE MILLIONS MAIN EVENT
Patrik Antonius and Chris Moorman were the big guns at the final table, but in the end it was unheralded Aussie Millions regular David Gorr who walked away with the largest poker prize of the new year. Gorr came to the final table in a strong second position, just behind early chip leader James Keys, and it was those two who ended up battling it out for the event’s AUD $2,000,000 to open up a wide margin, though Keys fought back and the two enjoyed a lengthy battle before Keys departed with a runner-up payday of $1,035,000. Jeff Rossiter finished third for $700,000, while Antonius and Moorman were the first two eliminated from the final table, finishing in eight and seventh, respectively.
RAYMER, POKERSTARS PART WAYS
One of the longest running endorsement deals in poker came to an end recently when former WSOP world champ Greg Raymer confirmed that he was no longer a member of Team PokerStars Pro, that roster of players representing the world’s largest online site. Raymer enjoyed only limited success in major events following his WSOP win, but had established himself as one of the game’s foremost and knowledgeable spokesmen in political and business matters. PokerStars did not issue an immediate statement on the parting, while Raymer released only a brief and amicable statement of confirmation, promising a longer message at a later date.
SEIDEL TAKES AUSSIE HIGH ROLLERS
“High Roller” tourneys continue to be the latest hot trend at major tournament venues, and the recent Aussie Millions held one of the largest to date, with a whopping AUD $250,000 buy-in. This one had a special gimmick, too, with players allowed only 30 seconds per decision during a hand. Twenty players signed up for the fun, and in the end Erik Seidel walked away with the top prize of $2,500,000. Sam Trickett took second, with David Benyamine finishing third.
JACK URY, OLDEST WSOP PARTICIPANT, DIES AT 97
Terra Haute, Indiana’s Jack Ury, who achieved notoriety in 2007 by becoming the oldest-ever WSOP participant, died February 1 of undisclosed causes. Ury made his WSOP debut at age 93 after traveling to the Rio with his son-in-law and grandson, and appeared in four successive Main Events, from 2007-2010. Ury failed to cash in his four main event appearances but was a hit with his fellow players and television camera crews, who included a couple of notable Ury hands in their national TV coverage.
GREECE LEGALIZES ONLINE GAMBLING
One of the European countries long at loggerheads with European Union guidelines regarding online gambling has now decided to join, rather than fight. Per Reuters, Greek officials plan to license as many as 50 online sites to serve Greek citizens, which hopes to generate many millions of Euros in new tax revenues. The proposal is set to be voted upon during the first quarter of 2011, with the first licenses awarded by year’s end.