It was just a few days ago that CEO of Amaya Gaming, David Baazov, was charged with insider trading via Quebec securities regulator, Autorité des Marchés Financiers. The CEO has now been pu ton paid leave, indefinitely, as the charges come to light.
Baazov will remain on the board of directors at Amaya and has stated his innocence in the matter. The securities regulator of Quebec announced that 23 charges were filed against Amaya, with five belonging to Baazov. The CEO reportedly used information he was privy to, to allow others to earn money including his brother.
As he proclaimed his innocence, Baazov stated that the allegations were false and he intends to vigorously contest the allegations. With the CEO stepping aside for now, the board of directors at Amaya have placed Divyesh Gadhia as the interim chairman. Interim CEO will be Rafi Ashkenazi, who currently works as the CEO of the Rational Group. Gadhia is already on the board of directors at Amaya.
These charges against Baazov come just days after PokerStars, the top online poker site operated by Amaya, launches in the state of New Jersey. The charges against Baazov shed a negative light on PokerStars, who already had to work extra hard to be accepted as an operator in the United States.
It will be interesting to see if these charges will affect PokerStars in anyway. The brand was already in question when trying to gain licensing in New Jersey as they were part of Black Friday, just a few years ago. When Black Friday took place, several officials of the company faced charges and were asked not to be associated with the company as they gained licensing in the state.
Now, it begs the question if PokerStars will have to disassociate with Baazov if he is found guilty of the insider trading charges.