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Old 01-10-2018, 10:54 PM   #501
michelle227
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Re: Membership-Based Poker in Texas

Oh, and that two and a half-year old article you link...guess what...not a single felony conviction. And the Engaging in Organized Criminal Activity charges were no-billed. I guess your anti-gambling group didn't tell you about THAT...maybe if you spent some time running the traps on the Clerk's website, though, you would have known that.

Some of the dismissals even cited "Insufficient Evidence." You could also go and pull the files...you might even learn something.

Concealing funds is rarely a good thing, and that is not something you seem to accuse the room operators of doing in the case of poker operators. That is, however, what got the attention of the ADA later charged with DWI and bounced from Harris County though...
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Old 01-11-2018, 12:42 AM   #502
Ganymede
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Re: Membership-Based Poker in Texas

Damn this is getting entertaining!
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Old 01-11-2018, 01:46 AM   #503
HTwnPokerGuy
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Re: Membership-Based Poker in Texas

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Originally Posted by michelle227 View Post
You clearly don't understand 'stacking' and what it means in Texas criminal defense. Come back when you have some manner of demonstrable experience in the actual practice of criminal law.

To say nothing of the fact that you first have to show 'gambling' in order to even GET to any notion of 'gambling promotion' AND THEN you have to have a prosecutor willing to touch the case...and you CONTINUE to overlook that Kim has chosen to make Harris County a sanctuary city in which she ALSO is not prosecuting small quantity pot charges. Do you REALLY think that she is going to direct her staff to push for other misdemeanor charges if she is thumbing her nose at federal law violations?
Apparently the poor game room folks in the article didn't understand stacking...and found themselves facing a bunch of felony charges beyond just gambling. OOPS! There's nothing stopping the same thing from happening to these so-called "legal" poker room folks as well.

You're incorrect on 47.03 Gambling Promotion. The prosecutor needs to show operation of a "gambling place"...which is tied to the definition of a "bet" in 47.01. There's no affirmative defense. This is the route the Harris County DA has taken for years to bust poker rooms.

If they can, they're also going to add in Organized Crime and Money Laundering to try and get the defendants to cut a deal and plead guilty to reduced charges.

Anyone have an update on the Mint Poker cease and desist? It would be great to see this letter like we got to see the one for the poker room in Dallas.
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Old 01-11-2018, 12:21 PM   #504
michelle227
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Re: Membership-Based Poker in Texas

LOL at people not understanding what "Insufficient Evidence" and "No Bill" means. Not to mention clearly not grasping that law enforcement making an arrest does NOT mean that illegal conduct actually occurred (which goes back to the first point).

It is abundantly clear with each passing post that HTPG has ZERO experience in criminal jurisprudence.
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Old 01-11-2018, 05:41 PM   #505
HTwnPokerGuy
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Re: Membership-Based Poker in Texas

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LOL at people not understanding what "Insufficient Evidence" and "No Bill" means. Not to mention clearly not grasping that law enforcement making an arrest does NOT mean that illegal conduct actually occurred (which goes back to the first point).

It is abundantly clear with each passing post that HTPG has ZERO experience in criminal jurisprudence.
I continue to be highly entertained here. You keep making baseless arguments, and I'll keep knocking them down with common sense, case law, statute references, and actual events.

What I think you're missing is that Texas Card House did a terrible job in creating this business model. It's ridiculously easy to poke a ton of holes in it.

Folks all over the state like Mint Poker and Post Oak Poker Club have blindly followed this same business model without doing any quality research on their own.

Fast forward, authorities in the Dallas area have said this business model doesn't work. Now you've also apparently got Mint Poker in the Houston area being told this business model doesn't work as well.

The goal for anyone who loves live poker and wants to play it locally should be to try and understand WHY these places in Dallas and now Houston are getting told this business model doesn't work...not blindly defending it as you are doing.
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Old 01-11-2018, 08:03 PM   #506
BulltexasATM
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Re: Membership-Based Poker in Texas

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Originally Posted by HTwnPokerGuy View Post
A dealer at Mint Poker said they recently got a cease and desist letter from the authorities. Does anyone know any more about this?

It looks like Houston is going to go the same way Dallas has gone?
You are such a tool,you are the one that posted about the Mint hearsay from a dealer
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Old 01-11-2018, 08:06 PM   #507
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Re: Membership-Based Poker in Texas

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Originally Posted by HTwnPokerGuy View Post
I continue to be highly entertained here. You keep making baseless arguments, and I'll keep knocking them down with common sense, case law, statute references, and actual events.

What I think you're missing is that Texas Card House did a terrible job in creating this business model. It's ridiculously easy to poke a ton of holes in it.

Folks all over the state like Mint Poker and Post Oak Poker Club have blindly followed this same business model without doing any quality research on their own.

Fast forward, authorities in the Dallas area have said this business model doesn't work. Now you've also apparently got Mint Poker in the Houston area being told this business model doesn't work as well.

The goal for anyone who loves live poker and wants to play it locally should be to try and understand WHY these places in Dallas and now Houston are getting told this business model doesn't work...not blindly defending it as you are doing.
And now in your latest post you are acting like it’s a common fact even though you are the one that started the rumor here
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Old 01-11-2018, 09:06 PM   #508
HTwnPokerGuy
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Re: Membership-Based Poker in Texas

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You are such a tool,you are the one that posted about the Mint hearsay from a dealer
As classy as your profile photo...

I've heard it from multiple people now inside and outside Mint. It was also openly discussed at my table the last time I played there. We've got Mint Poker shills in here...are they denying it?

Again, you membership club owners/employees should be focused on WHY these cease and desist letters keep coming...not trying to pretend them away with bluster and name-calling.
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Old 01-11-2018, 11:04 PM   #509
michelle227
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Re: Membership-Based Poker in Texas

Aside from the fact that nobody has actually shown any of these alleged letters, you conveniently overlook that, from what has been described in the thread, Mint was NOT operating in a manner consistent with a model that was compliant. They have been described as allowing chips off the table for tips and to pay for other charges.

In other words, unless people have not been truthful about how Mint operates (I never played there- too far south for me to drive), they have more in common with the underground games than the ones using models in place around the State and that are on par with POPC.

And you, HTPG, have YET to refute the fact that law enforcement often screws the pooch by making assertions not steeped in law. Outside of poker, we have the incident at the Hyatt and where the DA had to concede last week that the request for high bail was based on flawed information (you still have never addressed that case). You also ignore the dismissals in the Le series of offenses that expressly stated they were due to insufficient evidence and that the grand jury also no-billed other allegations. Blizzard did not get a single conviction out of all of that bluster.

How exactly DID your day in the Clerk's office go? Oh that's right...you don't know jack about criminal jurisprudence and probably have no clue about reviewing a file...
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Old 01-12-2018, 01:40 AM   #510
HTwnPokerGuy
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Re: Membership-Based Poker in Texas

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Originally Posted by michelle227 View Post
Aside from the fact that nobody has actually shown any of these alleged letters, you conveniently overlook that, from what has been described in the thread, Mint was NOT operating in a manner consistent with a model that was compliant. They have been described as allowing chips off the table for tips and to pay for other charges.

In other words, unless people have not been truthful about how Mint operates (I never played there- too far south for me to drive), they have more in common with the underground games than the ones using models in place around the State and that are on par with POPC.

And you, HTPG, have YET to refute the fact that law enforcement often screws the pooch by making assertions not steeped in law. Outside of poker, we have the incident at the Hyatt and where the DA had to concede last week that the request for high bail was based on flawed information (you still have never addressed that case). You also ignore the dismissals in the Le series of offenses that expressly stated they were due to insufficient evidence and that the grand jury also no-billed other allegations. Blizzard did not get a single conviction out of all of that bluster.

How exactly DID your day in the Clerk's office go? Oh that's right...you don't know jack about criminal jurisprudence and probably have no clue about reviewing a file...
The Plano letters were already linked in the thread. Here it is again directly from Big Texas Poker's website: http://bigtexaspoker.com/wp-content/..._Letters-1.jpg

I haven't seen the Mint letter myself...just been told repeated it exists by people who've seen it. Hopefully Eakman or someone posts it like Big Texas Poker did theirs.

I have no doubt law enforcement gets out over their skis sometimes, but who wants to find themselves facing serious felony charges they have to defend? The folks in Dallas certainly didn't. Maybe Eakman will give it a go. I don't know.

The point remains, the powers that be are not buying this membership-based model with a time rake. (Yes, the same model being employed by Post Oak Poker Club.) You guys should put all your energy into finding out WHY this is rather than shaking your fists at the sky.

Last edited by HTwnPokerGuy; 01-12-2018 at 02:08 AM.
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Old 01-12-2018, 02:01 AM   #511
GtownAce
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Re: Membership-Based Poker in Texas

Mint is a underground poker game for sure been saying it and everyone knows it , they do nothing like Post Oak. I can win a pot and take it off the table next hand if i wanted to. I still play there on regular basis cause who cares no one is policing them. Its crazy how so many rooms just popping up all over town and more coming this month.
MINT Poker
POST Oak
LIONS
HAngar
Kings cards
Houstonian
On The FELT
PRIME
Grinders
Freerolls HOUSTON
The Legion
Texas Shoot Out
Doc Hollidays
Westside
Royal Poker Club
The Vault Galveston
Mint poker #2 Location
Another New one in southwest Houston no name yet! LOL

MORE *Legal rooms than underground rooms.
Im sure by next week there will be 3 more i didnt name since everyone thinks they can run poker rooms now anxious to see who opens in Katy or Woodlands first my money is on POP or MINT
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Old 01-12-2018, 02:16 AM   #512
HTwnPokerGuy
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Re: Membership-Based Poker in Texas

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Originally Posted by GtownAce View Post
Mint is a underground poker game for sure been saying it and everyone knows it , they do nothing like Post Oak. I can win a pot and take it off the table next hand if i wanted to. I still play there on regular basis cause who cares no one is policing them. Its crazy how so many rooms just popping up all over town and more coming this month.
MINT Poker
POST Oak
LIONS
HAngar
Kings cards
Houstonian
On The FELT
PRIME
Grinders
Freerolls HOUSTON
The Legion
Texas Shoot Out
Doc Hollidays
Westside
Royal Poker Club
The Vault Galveston
Mint poker #2 Location
Another New one in southwest Houston no name yet! LOL

MORE *Legal rooms than underground rooms.
Im sure by next week there will be 3 more i didnt name since everyone thinks they can run poker rooms now anxious to see who opens in Katy or Woodlands first my money is on POP or MINT
Oh Lord this list...the blind leading the blind.

I'm pretty sure Mint Poker doesn't think they are an underground poker room. Here's how they describe themselves:
"Mint Poker is the largest legal poker room in Texas and the only city approved card room in the Houston area."

All of these clubs use the same basic model....which is the same model that was being used in Dallas...everyone ripped off Texas Card House. Everyone's using the same flawed approach.
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Old 01-12-2018, 11:22 AM   #513
michelle227
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Re: Membership-Based Poker in Texas

A letter from law enforcement carries no impact in terms of actual law violation. After all, it is no different than the numbnuts in the article from the Chronicle you linked to that produced ZERO convictions, saw dismissals due to insufficient evidence and saw the Grand Jury returning 'no bills.' And, again, as noted, we saw the incorrect interpretation with the guy at the Houston Hyatt because 'ohmyeffinggawdguns' only to then see prosecutors have to concede that, umm, yeah, we were wrong.

The reality is that there was no law enforcement shut down of the rooms in the Dallas area. The owners made a decision after the local law enforcement agency bluff-shoved with the nut low.

Further, it matters not what Mint may claim on their website as regards their operation. The reality with Mint, from what is posted here, is that money was coming off of the table. That puts them in the same category as the underground games and is actually the closest to a mirror of the scenario described in one of the antiquated appellate Opinions where the rake was allegedly just to cover overhead expenses. And, not having played in any of the Dallas-area rooms, I cannot say whether or not that may have been occurring there as well...

HTPG is clearly the sort of person who is ALSO swayed in elections by headlines and not actual fact. I find it peculiar that he (presumption based upon userID) STILL has not spent any time in the Clerk's office despite the fact that he lives in the jurisdiction (again, based upon the userID) and the Clerk's office is easily accessible (just don't expect to use the tunnels since they are still generally out of commission from the storms). And, there is still no reference to what actual experience he has in criminal jurisprudence, no matter whether as a prosecutor or on the defense side of the courtroom. My guess is that the closest he has ever been to a courtroom was paying traffic tickets.
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Old 01-12-2018, 05:47 PM   #514
tangram16
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Re: Membership-Based Poker in Texas

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What are you claiming is a question of law? The fact that this is NOT a felony in Texas? That a JURY is not going to impose pen time? Sentencing in Texas is determined by a jury in a jury trial, and that is ONLY if it moves to a sentencing phase of the trial process.

The questions to be answered would be contained in the jury instructions read BY the trial judge. My guess is you have never seen one of those documents...they are not typically a novella but they do often run six to twelve pages depending on how many elements of the law are being defined and what alternate elements or lesser-included offenses or affirmative defenses exist in a given case.

The statutes offer a LOT of room for competent defense counsel to have a field day which is why few prosecutors would even look to have this land on their plate. And, as noted, a sanctuary city that has punted most basic pot prosecutions (another misdemeanor offense) is not one with poker as a priority...I would easily see Travis County being in the same category given that they have historically been far more liberal than the neighbors to the north (Williamson) or to the south (Hays). Granted, both Williamson and Hays have softened in the past decade with the departures of Bradley and Wenk, but one is STILL better off when the case is in Travis than in the other two.
Oopsie..thought this was clear. For the uninformed, judges decide questions of law, juries decide questions of fact.

In this instance, the judge will decide whether the conduct of one of the so-called "legal" poker rooms violates the "economic benefit" defense of s47.02 (b). I believe that 99.9% of judges will say an economic benefit occurred.

I practice in another jx, and my area of practice is gaming regulation. IMO, 47.01 et seq is very well written, very carefully constructed (also note that the practice notes state the legisation was to proscribe commercial gambling businesses, which should clear up any ambiguity about what "economic benefit" means), it looks to me like it's a pretty comprehensive and clear statutory scheme. And,yeah, I'm pretty good at finding the cracks in statutes and exploiting them for my clients. I'm very much pro gaming but this model is a loser IMO. It trades a direct economic benefit to the operator for an indirect one, and I don't see language that would indicate that's a distinction which is a difference. May God bless the Harris/Bexar County DA that disagrees or doesn't care.

However, on my fourth or fifth reading of the statute, I did find something I feel pretty good about. However, I don't play for the honor of the game, especially, when potentially literally tens of millions of dollars in revenues are at stake, and no one on this forum likely has $50K to hire a top tier firm to handle both the defense and the appeal-because that's what it's going to run (yeah..you could theoretically do it for less than $10K, but considering the potential upside, why take chances?).

Finally, this gets resolved through the courts, not the lege. You have close to zero chance in the lege. Courts protect minority interests, and while gambling is an emotional subject for many a judge, this is still your best shot at having a legal poker industry in the state.

I have three or four other projects, mostly involving sports betting, filling my plate right now. Maybe if it's still kicking in the spring I'll reach out to a couple of the owners..and yes I've already been to a few of these operations. Some are run better than others.

Final thought...the equities appear to be different in Austin, SA, Dallas and Houston. I may be a much more popular guy in Dallas or Houston than I might be in Austin. I don't take that personally at all, it comes with the territory.
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Old 01-12-2018, 05:59 PM   #515
tangram16
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Re: Membership-Based Poker in Texas

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Originally Posted by michelle227 View Post
A letter from law enforcement carries no impact in terms of actual law violation. After all, it is no different than the numbnuts in the article from the Chronicle you linked to that produced ZERO convictions, saw dismissals due to insufficient evidence and saw the Grand Jury returning 'no bills.' And, again, as noted, we saw the incorrect interpretation with the guy at the Houston Hyatt because 'ohmyeffinggawdguns' only to then see prosecutors have to concede that, umm, yeah, we were wrong.

The reality is that there was no law enforcement shut down of the rooms in the Dallas area. The owners made a decision after the local law enforcement agency bluff-shoved with the nut low.

Further, it matters not what Mint may claim on their website as regards their operation. The reality with Mint, from what is posted here, is that money was coming off of the table. That puts them in the same category as the underground games and is actually the closest to a mirror of the scenario described in one of the antiquated appellate Opinions where the rake was allegedly just to cover overhead expenses. And, not having played in any of the Dallas-area rooms, I cannot say whether or not that may have been occurring there as well...
So, what you're saying is that even if a C&D or "opinion" letter was produced, an operator couldn't go to court to have a declaration of his rights? He'd actually have to have a criminal trial? I'd think that would be a Federal Constitutional Prodcedural Due Process violation.
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Old 01-13-2018, 05:19 AM   #516
silverback87
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Re: Membership-Based Poker in Texas

Move to SA. Problem solved. You now owe me a beer or a bad fold. Thanks.
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Old 01-13-2018, 05:33 AM   #517
Ganymede
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Re: Membership-Based Poker in Texas

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Originally Posted by HTwnPokerGuy View Post
Oh Lord this list...the blind leading the blind.

I'm pretty sure Mint Poker doesn't think they are an underground poker room. Here's how they describe themselves:
"Mint Poker is the largest legal poker room in Texas and the only city approved card room in the Houston area."

All of these clubs use the same basic model....which is the same model that was being used in Dallas...everyone ripped off Texas Card House. Everyone's using the same flawed approach.
You obviously haven't played at the Texas Card House in a while. The model is quite different than the ones you see in Dallas and Houston.
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Old 01-13-2018, 02:48 PM   #518
TonyTexan56
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Re: Membership-Based Poker in Texas

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You obviously haven't played at the Texas Card House in a while. The model is quite different than the ones you see in Dallas and Houston.


How is the TCH model different?
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Old 01-13-2018, 08:25 PM   #519
HTwnPokerGuy
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Re: Membership-Based Poker in Texas

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You obviously haven't played at the Texas Card House in a while. The model is quite different than the ones you see in Dallas and Houston.
Ehhh doesn't look any different to me:
http://www.texascardhouse.com/homepa...at/club-rules/

1. You pay a membership fee on a daily or longer basis...here $10/day
2. You pay a time rake...here $10/hour
3. If you don't pay both, you don't get to play poker
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Old 01-14-2018, 02:52 AM   #520
Ganymede
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Re: Membership-Based Poker in Texas

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Ehhh doesn't look any different to me:
http://www.texascardhouse.com/homepa...at/club-rules/

1. You pay a membership fee on a daily or longer basis...here $10/day
2. You pay a time rake...here $10/hour
3. If you don't pay both, you don't get to play poker
Devil is in the details, and you aren't looking at them.
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Old 01-14-2018, 11:47 AM   #521
HTwnPokerGuy
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Re: Membership-Based Poker in Texas

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Devil is in the details, and you aren't looking at them.
Lol more like lipstick on a pig.
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Old 01-15-2018, 01:24 AM   #522
zizek
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Re: Membership-Based Poker in Texas

michelle, what is your opinion on the lack of regulatory oversight on these rooms if they are legal? Who do I complain to if the cage denies me a cashout?
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Old 01-15-2018, 01:54 AM   #523
silverback87
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Re: Membership-Based Poker in Texas

Why do people refuse to play a 2/5 game yet love a deep 1/3? ****ing a, let's run some bigger games.
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Old 01-16-2018, 01:58 PM   #524
sdwhitt
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Re: Membership-Based Poker in Texas

I played at Lions Poker on Saturday. It was their $100 tourney, I believe they had over 100 entries, I believe that includes rebuys. Dealers, were good, waitresses were alright. Decent menu from the restaurant next door. I left after getting knocked out but they had 6 non -tourney tables going at that time. Both NLH and PLO. Parking is tough but they have free valet. Recommend.
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Old 01-16-2018, 06:33 PM   #525
Texasholdemmike
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Re: Membership-Based Poker in Texas

Just heard of a another one will be opening in the old Churrasco steak house in the Galleria area. It will be called Prime... Suppose to have 40 tables and will offer lots of different limit games and NL.. Also will have a full kitchen. Supposed to open in about two weeks.
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