Poker Coverage: Poker Tournaments Casino News Sports Betting Poker Strategy

World Poker Tour Champion Dennis Blieden Indicted For Embezzling $22 Million From Former Company

If Convicted, Blieden Could Face 200 Years In Prison


A World Poker Tour champion was indicted on multiple charges after embezzling $22 million from his former company, according to a press release from the U.S. Department of Justice.

Dennis Blieden, who won the 2018 Los Angeles Poker Classic main event for $1,000,000, was indicted Thursday in Las Vegas on 11 counts of wire fraud, one count of identity theft and two forfeiture counts.

The 29-year-old was the controller and vice president of accounting and finance for StyleHaul, a digital marketing company based in Los Angeles that represented ‘influencers’ on YouTube and Instagram. Blieden had control of the company’s bank accounts and allegedly wired money from those accounts to his personal accounts.

According to the DOJ, he wrote $1.2 million in personal checks to other poker players, $1.1 million was used to pay off credit cards and another $8.4 million was transferred to what the DOJ is calling his ‘cryptocurrency accounts,’ likely his account on a crypto exchange.

The indictment alleges that he falsified wire transfer letters from Western Union to make it look like the money was being used to pay clients when the money was actually going to his personal accounts, where authorities claim he used it to enter poker tournaments. In an interview with Card Player last year, Blieden said he was hoping to enter the $300,000 Super High Roller Bowl.

Blieden, who currently lives in Nevada after leaving his job at StyleHaul in 2018, was indicted in Las Vegas but will be arraigned in Los Angeles at a later date. If convicted, Blieden could face up to 200 years in prison.

Before his LAPC victory, Blieden only had two live cashes to his name. He has also been a regular in the high-stakes cash games streamed on Live at the Bike!.