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Ray Bitar to Plead Guilty, Awaits Heart Transplant

Posted at 18:00 2013-04-09 by Rich Ryan

On Monday, The Wall Street Journal reported that former Full Tilt Poker CEO Ray Bitar reached a deal to plead guilty to criminal charges, citing the need for a heart transplant.

At a hearing at the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, U.S. District Judge Loretta Preska set April 19 as a potential date for Bitar to enter a guilty plea in his case in California. Bitar will undergo surgery in the Golden State.

John F. Baughman, Bitar's attorney, announced that Bitar has entered a plea agreement but did not divulge what charges he will plead guilty to.

"It's a very unusual situation," Baughman said. "We've been able to work out something with the government that takes into account the unique circumstances. We appreciate the government's courtesy in this regard."

Bitar was willingly arrested last July at John F. Kennedy Airport when he returned to the U.S. for the first time since Black Friday. In March of 2012, he apologized in an interview with PokerStrategy.

In July of 2012, the Rational Group purchased Full Tilt and settled with the U.S. Department of Justice for a sum of $731 million.

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