It was back in 2010, and poker pro and TV commentator Joe Sebok was winding out of his poker career anyway, due to a series of bad professional decisions, or simply due to not winning enough money, depending on who you ask. It wasn’t over yet, but the writing was on the wall. In the midst of that turmoil, Tyler Schrier, 23, hacked into Sebok’s email account, where he found some Anthony Weiner-esque pics and intimate emails, and contacted Sebok, threatening to post the pics if Sebok (and apparently some others who were equally scantily clad and effusive in their written thoughts) didn’t pay up hundreds of thousands of dollars in blackmail payments to Schrier.
Fast Forward to Now
Now Schrier and his cohort, Keith James Hudson, 39, have been sentenced for their crimes, which include conspiracy, extortion, unauthorized access to a protected computer, hacking, and stealing personal information.
Schrier received a 42-month sentence after pleading guilty; part of his plea deal included admitting that he also extorted $26,000 from other pro poker players in another similar scenario (the other players remain unnamed for now). Oh, and while free on bond after he was charged in this case, true to form, Schrier illegally accessed several more email accounts, and using information from those accounts, went on to steal close to $4,000 from the account-holders’ online poker accounts, according to federal court records. Nice.
Hudson was handed down a two-year prison term, where he will probably find out what’s it’s like to be on the receiving end of some extortion threats.
What Happened in Brief
Apparently as punishment for not acquiescing to his payment demands, Schrier did send out the stolen and nude pics of Sebok in late 2010 to some 100 individuals. It’s not clear exactly who he selected for this exciting visual, or why, but in sentencing these two losers, U.S. District Court Judge James Otero allowed Sebok to address the court, who noted that the acts of these two ne’er-do-wells caused his own and others’ “lives [to be] altered and shattered in irreparable ways.”
Sebok added that the published naked photographs “instantly damaged my ability to sustain my livelihood doing what I had been since 2005.” We’re not really sure if that makes sense, given that Weiner is now running for mayor of New York City, but regardless why, Sebok has indeed left the poker world behind entirely.
Grapes of Wrath
In a lifestyle shift that can only be described as bizarre, Sebok went to work for a winery in Santa Rosa, California. You might say, that’s not so odd; he’s probably good at sales – but he’s not in sales. He’s crushing grapes, in what he self-describes as “typical cellar rat stuff.” Hard physical labor, and we can’t imagine he makes as much in a year as he used to make some days in his poker glory days.
But two things we’re pretty sure of, and that’s that Joe Sebok isn’t stomping grapes naked, and also that his sexting days are over.