Poker Stars has enacted a special limitation against Chinese internet poker players.
The new regulation prevents more than one Chinese gambler from playing in any given ring game at a single moment. This condition is not novel, but rather has been used at numerous Sit-and-Go (SNG) tournaments.
This restraint was set after the revelation of a large collusion ring at online poker sites in China back in spring 2010. Evidence demonstrated that many Chinese poker players had been involved. These players generally came from the same provincial region. They conspired over double-or-nothing SNGs throughout the previous year, enabling each other to win hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Poker Star generously compensated the cheated players to the tune of $2.1 million. Buy-ins for these games sometimes cost as much as $104.
No hints have been made that new cheating rings have been exposed. This constraint may nothing more than proactive defense in Poker Star’s poker rooms.
Poker’s popularity in China is both limited and recent. Major casinos in Macau only begin offering poker during the past year, after the Asian Pacific Poker Tour (APPT) was allowed to hold an event in China. Dedicated Chinese poker rooms are rare. Chinese gambling laws prohibit online poker sites from actually operating in China, so Chinese citizens must look abroad to foreign operators when they wish to play.