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Poker Player's Ban Over Fake $1,100 Tournament Ticket Upheld

Incident Happened In October In South Dakota

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Burleson. Credit: MSPTA poker player’s ban from casinos in South Dakota was unanimously upheld by the local gaming regulator.

According to a report from the Capitol News Bureau, poker player Rick Burleson was seeking to have his named removed from an excluded persons list. The South Dakota Commission on Gaming said no dice.

The commission on Wednesday reportedly rejected the request. Burleson and another poker player, Benjamin Palmer, were placed on the list in March following the late 2021 incident.

(Note: This person is not to be confused with the Ben Palmer who has more than $3 million in lifetime tournament earnings and won a World Poker Tour title in 2019)

“The reason for the exclusion is that you engaged in fraudulent activity in association with a city-wide [Deadwood] poker tournament on or about October 23, 2021, by being aware of Benjamin Palmer’s theft of an Eleven Hundred Dollar poker tournament entry ticket at the Silverado Casino and further assisting Benjamin Palmer after the theft occurred,” a state order said.

An excluded person who goes into a South Dakota casino could face a year in jail and a small fine. Burleson reportedly said he didn’t mean to deceive the casino. “I hate how it’s ruined my reputation,” he was quoted as saying.

Burleson admitted that Palmer gave the entry ticket to him at Palmer’s house the day before the tournament. The ticket was accepted by the Silverado poker room when Burleson registered. Burleson said he had been playing for several hours when the poker room manager approached him, telling him the ticket was invalid.

“I was not under the impression that this was fraudulent,” Burleson told the commission Wednesday. He said that Palmer was his financial backer for the event.

An agent “testified that he interviewed and arrested Palmer for his participation in the scheme,” per the report. Palmer admitted to creating the ticket, according to the report.

Palmer reportedly showed the agent text messages between himself and Burleson. Upon review, the commission determined that the contents of the messages were enough to reject the request for removal from the excluded person’s list.