Hawai‘i Woman Charged With $1M Theft From Poker Magazine
The Las Vegas Review Journal reported that a Hawai‘i woman is accused of stealing more than $1 million from one of the poker industry’s leading publications and was indicted Thursday, Aug. 30, 2018, on two dozen felony counts.
Las Vegas Prosecutors claim that Shelby McCann stole from Card Player magazine after she began working for the company as a financial controller in September of 2011.
Chief Deputy District Attorney Jay P. Raman state that McCann wrote fraudulent checks, paid off credit cards with corporate funds and artificially increased her own salary. The total theft amount was nearly $1.1 million.
Raman said McCann was hired by the magazine around five months after April 15, 2011, the day the Department of Justice shut down three of the game’s most popular online poker websites, also known as Black Friday in the poker world.
Indictments against executives at Absolute Poker, Full Tilt Poker and PokerStars affected the magazine’s advertising revenue and forced Card Player to cut the company’s staff by more than 90%, according to Allyn Jaffrey Shulman, the magazine’s co-owner and lawyer. She owns the magazine with her husband, Card Player CEO Barry Shulman, who purchased the magazine in 1998.
“All of the sudden there was no money to pay the bills,” Allyn Shulman said. “This made us start thinking: What the heck is going on?”
McCann used a crowdfunding website to funnel upward of $22,000 for an adoption with checks written from the Card Player bank account, according to Raman and Allyn Schulman.
Another crowdfunding page showed that McCann, using the first name Anna, and her husband, Benjamin, has raised $468 of a $20,000 goal for her legal defense.
Shelby McCann was living in the State of Hawai‘i on the proceeds of the theft when she was arrested, Raman said. She faces 23 counts of theft and one count of unlawful acts regarding computers.