High-Profile Poker Ring Busted in Denver

March 6 2009, 9:44 AM

Former Denver Broncos Reggie Rivers and Rod Bernstine were two of about 100 alleged high rollers in the Gin Rummy Club, an illegal gambling operation on South Broadway that left two people so mired in debt that they killed themselves. That's according to 9News, which reports that players won and lost as much as $10,000 a hand in games that lasted several days. Bernstine tells 9News, "I would have to say I knew it was illegal." Others involved include Francois Safieddine, president of the Monarck nightclub in Denver, and John Sacha, a pain medicine doctor also known as "Dr. Poker" in instructional videos, according to The Denver Post. Seven people have been indicted (Jeff Castardi, Dawn Wolf, Laura Fouty, James Elterman, David Lettin, Todd Casey, and Daniel Rieke) on charges that include racketeering, illegal gambling, and loan-sharking. Players in the club are being treated as witnesses who won't be charged. Meanwhile, in Colorado Springs, police busted a gambling operation at Paul's Bar, according to 11 News.

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