Will U.S. allow Malaysia’s Paul Phua to leave the country?
Malaysia’s Wei Seng “Paul” Phua, a well-known high roller poker player who’s been charged with running an illegal World-Cup gambling ring from his luxury suite at Caesars Palace, might be allowed to leave the US after two court rulings that have sunk the case against him.
U.S. District Judge Andrew Gordon threw out the evidence collected in July from a $25,000-a-night villa stacked with banks of computers, monitors and televisions tuned into World Cup games.
Gordon called the FBI’s handling of the case “fast and loose.” With no substantial evidence, he had to rule in favor of Phua. Furthermore, the Justice Department lawyers dropped their opposition to Phua’s request to return home while the case remains pending.
The 50-year-old Malaysian businessman and competitor in international poker tournaments told the court on May 22 that he wanted to return to Malaysia because his mother’s suffering from advanced pancreatic cancer.
This plea wasn’t meant for him to flee but to take care of his ailing mother. According to the poker player, he would return to the US rather than let a trial proceed in his absence because he intends to prove his innocence and restore his damaged reputation.
Moreover, Phua retracted his earlier proposal to leave his $48-million private jet being left behind as collateral. His camp said that it would take more than a year for the government to appeal Gordon’s rulings and bring the case to trial and leaving the plane in Nevada would cause him significant inconvenience and economic harm.
Well, there are still many questions hanging in Phua’s case. Will Gordon reconsider his verdict? Can’t the FBI secure a conviction against Phua? Is Phua really allowed to leave the country? Could he really leave and then return to US on June 15 for his trial?
Truly, there are questions that remain unanswered as the case is still pending. Besides, Gordon hasn’t yet ruled on Phua’s request to leave the country, so it’s still unclear. All we have to do is wait and see for further updates on this case.