Man faces jail for stealing virtual poker chips

Man faces jail for stealing virtual poker chips
A man is facing jail time for stealing thousands of pounds worth of virtual pokers chips from an online poker website.

Ashley Mitchell admitted in court to stealing more than 400 billion virtual chips after breaking into the systems of Zygna, an online gaming outlet. The 400 billion virtual chips had a face value of about $12 million (7.4 million).



Mitchell had managed to gain 53,000 from the theft by selling the stolen virtual chips using a series of online accounts on social networking sites. He charged 430 per 1 billion virtual chips.

He posed as an administrator for the Zynga Poker game between June and September of 2009, before he gained access to the company's computer systems and carried out the electronic theft.

After realizing the amount of chips that had gone "missing", Zynga set up a sting which tracked down Mitchell. He pleaded guilty to five charges brought under the Computer Misuse Act and the Proceeds from Crime Act. He was remanded until a date was fixed for sentencing.

Written by: James Delahunty @ 7 Feb 2011 3:44
Tags
Zynga
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  • 12 comments
  • xaznboitx

    Ha, people dumb enough to trust this dude even though he has the chips.... also I never knew a guy name could be "Ashley"

    7.2.2011 12:44 #1

  • ZippyDSM

    ..... chips are not real money unless you cash them in, so whatever he cashed in is what he should be fined for.

    Until lobbying is a hanging offense I choose anarchy!
    Ah modern gaming its like modern film only the watering down of fiction and characters is replaced with shallow and watered down mechanics, gimmicks and shiny-er "people".
    http://zippydsmlee.wordpress.com/

    7.2.2011 16:42 #2

  • joepet200

    He stole "virtual chips"? Guess he'll have to do the "virtual time" in a "virtual prison".


    7.2.2011 16:42 #3

  • JOHNSTARR

    Zynga poker is nothing like real poker sites where you win money. Giving zynga or this clown any $ for "virtual chips" that you can't cash out is pathetic!!!

    No time for Leap frog!!!

    8.2.2011 06:46 #4

  • lissenup2

    I tried doing a search for this "Zynga Poker" and found it only led me to Facebook. I ask you all, is this a legit money winning poker site with real winnings?????


    Why is this guy getting any punishment?

    What country is punishing him?

    What country is suing/pressing charges against him?

    What country is Zynga hosted in?



    And IF he is getting punished for 'selling chips' then that's just ridiculous. Again, the system is trying to absolve those morons that bought chips from him of any stupidity. Lessen learned people. You got taken in a situation that was CLEARLY a sham. Wake up!

    8.2.2011 16:14 #5

  • ThePastor

    Zynga poker is not a real gambling site like say, Full Tilt Poker. It is Poker for fun, only. No real money.

    But, those chips cost money. You can buy them from Zynga using Facebook dollars so they have actual value.

    He used illegal means to steal the chips so he's a criminal.

    If he had WON the chips then you might could argue that they are his to sell, though I'm certain that that would be against Zyngas TOS.


    Unfortunately for them, all Blu-ray protections have been broken and BD rips can be found around the Internet, usually before the retail even hits shelves.

    8.2.2011 17:50 #6

  • lissenup2

    Originally posted by ThePastor: Zynga poker is not a real gambling site like say, Full Tilt Poker. It is Poker for fun, only. No real money.

    But, those chips cost money. You can buy them from Zynga using Facebook dollars so they have actual value.

    He used illegal means to steal the chips so he's a criminal.

    If he had WON the chips then you might could argue that they are his to sell, though I'm certain that that would be against Zyngas TOS.

    Again..you say that you can "buy" them from FB but where's the criminal act of "stealing" from another, at their expense, and "taking" from them or "removing" from them? How would restitution get paid in this case? Nothing was removed from another except maybe from Facebook chance of screwing others by selling something that clearly has no value what-so-ever.

    8.2.2011 19:58 #7

  • dEwMe

    The charges were under the Computer Misuse Act and the Proceeds from Crime Act...hacking in to and taking the credits would count for the first and selling the credits no matter how cheaply would count for the second. I don't see where they say he was actually charged with grand theft or any sort of crime relating to the value of what he took....

    Just my $0.02,

    dEwMe

    9.2.2011 15:43 #8

  • xboxdvl2

    if you can't spend the chips on anything in real life then why does it matter how many you have or how many you brought.people are practically throwing there money away by buying virtual poker chips that has no real value.he ripped zygna by stealing chips.Zygna ripped alot of people off by selling them items that have no value or purpose.

    married to my car and computer.both of them have problems.

    10.2.2011 02:19 #9

  • lissenup2

    Originally posted by xboxdvl2: if you can't spend the chips on anything in real life then why does it matter how many you have or how many you brought.people are practically throwing there money away by buying virtual poker chips that has no real value.he ripped zygna by stealing chips.Zygna ripped alot of people off by selling them items that have no value or purpose. I'm in total agreement.

    11.2.2011 00:55 #10

  • JOHNSTARR

    I'm definitely no saint but he deserves to get hammered along with all the peeps that "SELL" copied xbox 360 games, movies ect ect... I'd be the first person backing his cause if chips were given away but selling is straight overkill!!!

    No time for Leap frog!!!

    11.2.2011 05:35 #11

  • Zoo_Look

    I don't understand why people are arguing if he should face punishment her at all... he gained access to a computer and stole credits that were not his (which would be akin to stealing lottery scratch-cards which is illegal) and profited from that act by selling them on (again, selling goods that are not yours is illegal).

    Why is anybody even trying to argue otherwise?

    11.2.2011 09:16 #12

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