The European Poker Tournament (EPT) is one of the largest poker tours in the world. During the weekend the tour was passing through Germany, with a major event being held in Berlin, at the Berlin Grand Hyatt hotel. On Saturday afternoon, four masked marauders crashed the poker tournament and got away with one million Euros in prize money.
The heist happened in broad daylight, in front of poker players, spectators, and media. The men wore masks, and were quick in their actions. They were armed with hand grenades and automatic weapons; one even carried a machete. An unarmed security guard confronted the robbers, and was hit with the machete. The guard resorted to throwing things like a metal pole and a strongbox as they filled their bags with cash, but his retaliations proved ineffective.
The incident caused a panic, and the perpetrators had little trouble disappearing into the crowd. Police believe they made their getaway through an adjacent shopping complex. Authorities have no suspects, but the entire incident was caught on video, so there is little doubt the crooks will be caught.
The poker tournament resumed about four hours later, once everybody had settled down. European Poker Tour drew about 945 players from 48 countries around the world. Many players qualified for seats at the event by playing at online poker sites in Germany and across Europe.
On the European Poker Tour website, a brief mention of the heist is outlined in the blog, but news continued to flow afterwards, this time about Kevin Macphee who won the event and became the rightful owner of the €1 million prize. Macphee qualified at PokerStars, one of the most popular places to play online poker in Germany.