The UK Supreme Court proceedings in London on whether or not Phil Ivey would receive his £7.7 million in winnings from Crockfords Casino has come to a close with the court upholding the 2016 Court of Appeal’s decision (which upheld the original court decision) that Crockfords does not have to pay Ivey.
In the lead up to this ruling, the poker pro had lost his appeal against Genting Casinos UK (who owns Crockfords Club in Mayfair) back in November 2016.
Ivey was appealing the 2014 ruling that he was cheating while playing Punto Banco (a form of Baccarat) with his playing partner Cheung Yin Sun at the Crockfords Casino in August 2012 where the couple employed a techniques known as edge sorting — a way of exploiting printing inconsistencies of the cards.
The five Supreme Court justices unanimously upheld the 2014 ruling, with Lord Hughes quoted by the BBC as saying “it was essential that Punto Banco remained a game of pure chance with neither the casino nor the player being able to beat the randomness of the cards that were dealt.”
Ivey is quoted as saying, via his lawyers:
“It makes no sense that the UK Supreme Court has ruled against me, in my view, contrary to the facts and any possible logic involved in our industry.
“At the time I played at Crockfords, I believed that edge-sorting was a legitimate Advantage Play technique and I believe that more passionately than ever today. As Mr Justice Mitting found, this is not just my personal view but one that “commands considerable support from others” and I am grateful to the Supreme Court for confirming Mr Justice Mitting’s finding that I was a truthful witness in this respect and that this was my honest belief. As a professional gambler, my integrity is everything to me. It is because of my sense of honour and respect for the manner in which gambling is undertaken by professional gamblers such as myself that I have pursued this claim for my unpaid winnings all the way to the Supreme Court.
“It is very frustrating that the UK judges have no experience or understanding of casinos and Advantage Play, or the ongoing battle between casinos and professional gamblers attempting to level the playing field. If they had, I am very confident the result in this case would have been in my favour.”