The truth about the “technical issues” with eWalletXpress was given new light earlier this week when the payment processing company was served a warrant from the U.S. Government. According to an article by SportsbookGurus.com, management at a major online gambling site confirmed that the warrant had been served and the seizures had already begun, although specific details have not been released. What we do know is that eWalletXpress will not be available for U.S. players until further notice.
Beginning on November 12th, eWalletXpress was suddenly unavailable to customers and the company blamed the shutdown on “technical issues.” Then, about a week later, merchants received the following e-mail from the company: “We regret to inform you that we are no longer able to continue service at this time due to a federal warrant issued to seize our funds.” On its website, eWalletXpress removed the “USA” option for new users attempting to make an account, leaving Canada as the only country to choose.
While the company has made no official statement, details are leaking in slowly as online bettors continue to ask questions. The information we do have leads us to believe that eWalletXpress will exit the U.S. market for good in order to avoid prosecution, much like Neteller did a few years ago.
SportsbookGurus.com sources have stated that account holders who currently have money on eWalletXpress can currently request to receive their funds through the e-mail address [email protected]. eWalletXpress will allegedly transfer funds back into checking accounts when the “technical issues” are resolved and officials have assured players that any money in their account is safe.
The online poker site most affected by the seizure is likely Bodog, which offered eWalletXpress as one of its primary deposit methods. Customers can now use MyPayLinQ and Digital-Pin to fund their Bodog accounts as well as bank transfers or credit cards if available. Other online poker rooms that offered eWalletXpress as a deposit option were Carbon Poker, DoylesRoom, and Cake Poker.
Back in 2007, the U.S. Department of Justice seized up to $55 million in customer funds from Neteller, which caused uproar in the online poker community. At the time, Neteller was the primary method of transferring funds to and from online poker accounts. When the firm’s two Canadian founders were arrested and charged with racketeering and money laundering, customers were blocked from withdrawing their money back to their bank accounts.
Among those who had money on Neteller was poker pro Isaac Haxton, who had more than $800,000 sitting in his account at the time of the seizure. Haxton placed second at the 2007 PokerStars Caribbean Adventure in the Bahamas, at which point PokerStars transferred his earnings ($861,789) to his online poker account. Haxton planned to use Neteller to transfer the funds to his bank account, but while the transaction was being processed, Neteller’s founders were arrested and the Department of Justice intervened. Neteller agreed to pay a fine after about a year of negotiations and was able to release player funds.
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