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Judge Rules Borgata Lawsuit Against Phil Ivey Can Proceed

Phil Ivey

After losing his court battle with Crockfords Casino in October 2014, Phil Ivey will now have to face a similar lawsuit against Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa. Last week, a federal judge ruled that the lawsuit filed in April 2014 could proceed.

The Atlantic City casino's lawsuit alleges that Ivey exploited manufacturing flaws in playing cards during four sessions of Baccarat at the casino in 2012 and it is suing the 10-time World Series of Poker gold bracelet winner for $9.6 million in winnings at the Baccarat table.

Borgata claims that Ivey was able to spot tiny variations in the pattern printed on the backs of the cards in a method called "edge sorting" — a situation he is all too familiar with given the Crockfords incident.

Despite an attempt to motion for a dismissal, U.S. District Judge Noel Hillman will allow the claim to enter the discovery phase, stating "Borgata has pled plausible claims sounding in fraud."

Also named in the suit is Cheng Yin Sun, who reportedly accompanied Ivey to the Baccarat table and gave instructions to the dealer.

"Ivey and Sun argue that Borgata willingly agreed to all of their requests and provided all the implements of gambling, and that all of those requests, along with their observation of the patterns on the playing cards, were lawful," Hillman said in a release posted on "Ivey and Sun also note that even though Borgata wishes to cast itself as a victim of deceptive intentions, the 'essential mission of Borgata's casino operation is to encourage patrons to lose money by orchestrating a plethora of deceptive practices, such as loud noises and flashing lights on slot machines, hiding the clocks, making exit signs almost impossible to find, having cocktail waitresses wear revealing clothing, and comping copious amounts of alcohol to 'loosen up' their patrons. There is no doubt that much of the defendants' characterization of the casino milieu is accurate, as tangential a defense as it may be."

Following the discovery phase, Ivey and Borgata could proceed to trial.

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