31Aug
Liberty Poker Club to Remain Closed

Club Infiniti in Liberty Township, Ohio will remain closed indefinitely after a judge discarded the club owners’ complaint against the town and its police department for directing the owners to cease operation of the club.

The club had barely been open for two weeks when it was unceremoniously closed by the owners as per orders of the police department, having done otherwise would have resulted in a weekend raid; as what the police promised would happen if they did not follow orders.

It was only last April 9 when Club Infiniti opened its doors to the poker-playing public and just when things were only starting to roll, it was shut down on the 21st of the same month.

The legal adviser of club owners C.J. McCormick and Kevin Forestal, Gregg Rossi, on the other hand stated that he will be recommending to the owners that they reopen the club since they are operating legally because Club Infiniti is a private club.

CAUSES OF DISPUTES

Club owners maintain that they are a legal entity and that they are not getting any profits from the poker game itself but instead are imposing yearly membership fees and daily use charges.

The house does not get a dealt hand or are rake-free, unlike in most poker games in casinos, hence; all the pot money goes to the players.

There have been mixed reactions to this ongoing battle between Liberty Township and the club owners, with a few of these siding with the club owners and a number of others agreeing with Liberty Township’s decision to shut down the club.

One other cause for dispute is the approval given to the club owners through Liberty Township’s attorney Mark Finamore to go ahead with the club since he sees no reason why they should be affected by zoning regulations of the town.

Judge Peter Kontos of the Trumbull Common Please on the other hand stated that his reason for ruling out the complaint against Liberty Township and the police department is that the court has no jurisdiction over ordering local authorities from getting on with their constitutional duties concerning criminal charges with probable cause.

TESTING THE WATERS

With this dismissal of their complaint, it remains to be seen whether club owners C.J. McCormick and Kevin Forestal will open over the weekend to see whether they will be shut down again and charged before the Girard Municipal Court.

Both sides of this legal battle remain adamant on being on the right.  The club’s attorney insists that they are a private club and have a right to operate; while Girard prosecutor Bob Johnson and Liberty Township’s chief of police are standing their ground that if the club does re-open, they will close down the club and further going on to say that the owners will be nabbed.

With this ensuing battle of determining who is in the right of way, in a manner of speaking, what remains unseen at the moment is whether the club will once again see the light of day.

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