A few days ago, poker pro Henry Michael Borovetz has been arrested by police after they received reports from travelers being scammed by him at the Newark Airport. The scam involved Borovetz ‘borrowing’ money from unsuspecting travelers to pay for a hotel room after he claimed that his flight had been cancelled.
Michael Borovetz, age 43, who has won a WSOPC Gold Ring and has nearly $600,000 in live tourney winnings, is now getting a bad public image, yet again, over his airport scams. He apparently has a criminal record dating back to the early 2000s for a variety of misdemeanors.
Borovetz’s latest victim was a 55-year-old New Jersey man who had believed Borovetz’s tale of woe on April 3 Tuesday, and helped the con-man by handing over $200 after being approached by him at the baggage claim.
Shortly after handing him the cash, the victim realized his bad decision and reported the incident to Port Authority, who were able to verify that it was not the first time Michael Borovetz had pulled this stunt, having victimized a San Jose man in the same airport in June last year. Port Authority personnel revealed they had a previous report of Borovetz allegedly purchasing a refundable airline ticket so he could enter the airport’s secure area and scam people. After finding out that Borovetz was still at the Newark Airport Marriott, authorities went to his hotel room on April 5 Thursday and arrested him after being charged with theft by deception.
The Sad Tale of a Degenerate Gambler
Maybe some of you are familiar with the name Michael Borovetz, who, back in 2014 was the main subject of a lengthy 163-page forum thread on the 2+2 poker forum where he was reported to be doing the same airport scam in Las Vegas.
In the forum, the OP described Borovetz’s back story that said he had been in town for a couple of weeks looking for an apartment after coming to Las Vegas for an interview with DuPont but he’s now stuck because his flight had been cancelled and that he needed money, which he promised to pay back with 100% interest. During their conversation, Borovetz took one of the OP’s business cards for his contact details (another tactic of Borovetz’s wherein he would take a victim’s business card so he can show it to a future victim, telling them he had just been for an interview with the person whose card he has taken).
As the thread became more active and Borovetz was identified, the man himself wrote in the forum (his 2+2 username is PSUMike1999) and admitted his guilt. He then followed it up by writing several lengthy posts detailing his decade-and-a-half of gambling problem.
Apparently in his back story, in 1999 after Borovetz graduated in Chemical Engineering from Penn State, he got hooked on gambling. After he graduated, he really did get a job with DuPont in Iowa but he soon hated working there so he began to spend more and more of his time at the riverboat casinos close by, where he became constantly addicted to Pai Gow. After that his life became a downward spiral following a series of disastrous life choices, losing jobs, sleeping in casino lobbies or under bridges, getting arrested, undergoing rehabs, skipping bail and general degeneracy. Of course, at times Lady Luck gives him a break as he was able to turn a few hundred bucks into a six-figure sum, but unfortunately he always lost it within 24 hours. He found out and knew that he had a talent for poker, but each time he won, the next thing that happens is that he loses it all at the pits.
The last post that Borovetz wrote on the 2+2 forums was back in December 2014 entitled “It is time for a permanent change to my life, it has to be done”.
What other poker players say about him
In January 2013, Christian Harder wrote in his Twitter account, “Playing with one of the most miserable poker players ever. Constant complaining and berating of dealers... H Michael Borovetz”
In the 2+2 forum, member Luck3yChance said, “Played with him several times in AC and he is one of the most annoying and miserable people ever. Always berating dealers players and creating a scene.”
Every deed has a consequence
For his most recent stunt at the airport, Henry Michael Borovetz is scheduled to appear in Essex County Municipal Court on April 17, 2018.