According to a document posted on the Poker Fraud Alert forum, Lusardi was allegedly released from prison on July 25, 2016. If true, this would mean that he only served 6 months out of an 8-year minimum sentence.
This outraged several other posters, who complained about how Lusardi not only used counterfeit chips in the Borgata poker tournament, but also sold $1 million worth of bootleg DVDs.
Multiple poker news outlets have already reported on the document and its early “Date Out of Custody.” But according to poker reporter Haley Hintze, the idea that Lusardi is out of prison is mistaken. She posted the following on Poker Fraud Alert:
“This whole update is wrong. Or, rather, it’s technically correct but entirely misleading. Lusardi was indeed “paroled” last July, but he was never released. Instead he was transferred to a federal prison in South Carolina to serve out the remainder of his precedental and concurrent sentence for DVD bootlegging. He’s not going anywhere until at least June of 2019, which seems right, because I believe federal sentences require at least 85% time served before consideration for parole.”
Lusardi was arrested in January 2014, after tournament officials at the Borgata Winter Open discovered that a $2 million guaranteed event had been compromised. 800,000 in fake chips were floating around the tourney, which forced the Borgata to shut down the event and award $19,323 to each of the remaining 27 players.
They found out that Lusardi was the culprit after he flushed 2.7 million worth of chips, many of which got stuck in the pipes and caused a leak.
He was originally sentenced to five years in prison, but the judge tacked on another three years for the bootleg DVDs he was selling. So it’s definitely good that, as Hintze pointed out, Lusardi won’t be getting out of prison any time soon.