The legal volleying in the Mike Postle cheating scandal continued this week as two of the defendants sent the ball back in the direction of Veronica Brill and the 87 other plaintiffs.
On Monday, King’s Casino Management Corp., the owner of Stones Gambling Hall, and Justin Kuraitis each filed separate motions to dismiss the recently amended complaints filed by the Brill’s legal team.
This is the latest development in the case which began in October 2019 when Mike Postle, Kuraitis, and Stones Gambling Hall were the subjects of a lawsuit brought by Brill and what was then 25 other plaintiffs which sought $30 million in damages after allegations of cheating by Postle in the Stones Live cash games came to light.
In March, Stones filed an initial motion to dismiss where they built their argument centered around the argument that the lawsuit “reflects the oldest complaint of gamblers – that their lack of success means they were cheated.”
In early April, Postle was sued in Nevada by Marle Cordeiro for $30 million in damages. Two weeks ago, Mac Ver Standig, counsel for the 88 plaintiffs in California and Cordeiro in Nevada, filed motions in both states accusing Postle of using a ghostwriter in California and dodging service in the Nevada case.
In their latest motion to dismiss, Stones’ legal team claims that Brill et al failed to “articulate facts or law to support their claims” in the amended complaint filed in late March. The motion points out three specific reasons to dismiss: gambling losses are not considered damages under California law, the plaintiffs failed to “identify facts to cure the defects” in the amended complaint, and that plaintiffs were unable to counter any arguments or citations made by Stones in their initial response.
“Plaintiffs have already had an opportunity to amend to address the concerns raised by Stones. In 56 pages, Plaintiffs failed to identify additional allegations they could make that would state claims for relief. They should not be granted leave to amend,” the motion reads.
Stones claims the complexity of a single hand of poker makes it nearly impossible to determine whether a particular player would have won or lost a particular hand and that properly assigning damages is subsequently impossible.
“Plaintiffs cannot provide an accurate picture of their likelihood of winning because of the multitude of independent factors influencing how a hand of poker unfolds. They do not describe even a single hand in any detail, and the act of describing such a hand would make clear the impossibility of assessing proximate causation.”
Stones continues to ask the court to dismiss the libel complaint brought by Brill regarding a tweet sent from the official Stones Live Poker account in the aftermath of initial allegations against Postle being made public.
Earlier this year an accusation was made that a player was cheating in our game
We conducted a full investigation & found no evidence that any cheating had occurred
Stones Live stream remains a secure poker streaming platform
The recent allegations are completely fabricated
— StonesLivePoker (@StonesLivePoker) September 29, 2019
The motion asks the court to dismiss the libel charge because “Stones did not, as Plaintiffs suggest, make “a public statement – that Ms. Brill’s allegations about Mr. Postle were ‘completely fabricated.’” The tweet generically referred to “allegations.””
Lawyers for Kuraitis, the Stones Tournament Director who was also responsible for the management of the streaming operation, took a similar stance and also claim in their motion that California law prevents gamblers from seeking resolution in court to any dispute regarding losses suffered at a casino. His lawyers also took issue with Brill’s legal team citing cases “from two centuries ago”.
“On hands that defendant Postle won; he was the person who was “damaged”, not plaintiffs. On hands that defendant Postle lost, plaintiffs would not suffer damages, and certainly not damages proximately caused by any alleged cheating.”