If nothing else poker players are persistent, and we have a tendency to not give up in the face of adversity, which is being demonstrated by Aria regular Dick Di’Vella who is floating around a petition to get Howard Lederer banned from the casino’s poker room.
Di’Vella initially started his petition in-house, getting many Aria regulars to sign the document. After presenting it to the Aria the casino decided to thwart Di’Vella’s attempts to circulate the petition further, and decided to not take action against Lederer. The Aria staff did meet with Di’Vella, who Tweeted a summary of his conversation with them:
“I just had a 45 minute meeting with Aria and they are taking our concerns to upper management,”
“(However) I was told as of right now the poker room must stay neutral on the situation,”
“This movement goes for Bellagio and any other poker event around the world. Aria is my favorite place to play, wish I didn’t pick on them.”
Now Di’vella has brought his petition online (where it will likely gain far more support) posting it on the following website: Change.org
The petition currently has over 175 signatures online, and it is just now gaining attention on poker forums and in poker media –which should lead to more signatures. That said, it’s unclear how much added signatures from an online petition will affect the Aria’s decision, considering they felt there wasn’t enough backlash in the casino to act on Di’Vella’s petition.
A number of players and poker personalities seem to agree with the Aria, and have called the petition everything from “troubling” to “destructive” on Twitter and on poker forums. Here is a look at the petition posted by Di’Vella:
We, the undersigned patrons of the poker community, wish to express our deep concern with Howard Lederer playing poker in the Aria casino while currently under investigation by the Department of Justice and named as a co-conspirator in an amended civil indictment filed by the Department of Justice in the U.S. District Court in the Southern District of New York. We are particularly concerned with playing in the same poker room with someone who, according to the allegations in the above referenced amended civil indictment, knowingly conspired to commit acts of fraud and money laundering with regards to Full Tilt online poker players money.
We believe the casino has a moral and ethical obligation to bar Howard Lederer from playing in the poker room and should Aria casino fail to take immediate action we, the poker playing community, will be forced to boycott the poker room in Aria casino.
Anyone can sign the petition, and comments and reasons can be left at the bottom of the petition. We’ll keep you posted if the petition gains more traction or if the Aria (or any other poker room) decides to act on it.