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Sunday, June 18, 2017

JUST IN: Court Rules For White Marlin Open In Prize Money Dispute

OCEAN CITY — After roughly 10 months of legal wrangling and a nine-day trial in May, a federal judge on Wednesday ruled the winner of the white marlin division in the White Marlin Open was not entitled to the record $2.8 million payout after opining the angler, captain and crew were indeed deceptive on post-tournament polygraph exams.

Last August, tournament officials discovered a potential rules violation that would ultimately disqualify the winner in the white marlin division, a 76.5-pounder caught by angler Phillip Heasley on the Kallianassa out of Naples, Fla. Heasley’s 76.5-pound white marlin was awarded a tournament-record $2.8 million in prize money because the Kallianassa was entered across the board in all added entry levels and the fact it was lone qualifier.

On Wednesday, U.S. District Court Judge Richard Bennett ruled Heasley and the Kallianassa should be disqualified because of the apparent deception on the required polygraph exams.

“Ultimately, this Court concludes that Mr. Heasley’s arguments are without merit,” the judge’s opinion reads. “The White Marlin Open complied with its obligations and did not breach the Tournament Rules contract as a matter of law. Consequently, Mr. Heasley’s performance under that contract was not excused. By failing to satisfy the Tournament Rules’ polygraph requirement, Heasley himself failed to perform under the contract and is not entitled to the prize money.”

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19 comments:

Anonymous said...

Well how can they out do themselves this year???? I mean a potential payout of a tuna at the "tune" of $3M - WOW!!!!

Hopefully a few more legal marlin's this year AND AFTER 8:30AM folks!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

I am glad. I followed this and couldn't see any way possible the plaintiff could have prevailed.

Anonymous said...

Finally something the courts have made right. Its a disgrace that it had to come down to this to catch a cheater wonder how many other tournament's they have cheated in. The good thing is they'll never be able to fish in anything more than a local catfish tournament now

Anonymous said...

Well this guy's credibility is shot to heck. Not only is he out a bunch of $$$ but his reputation is in the tank.

Anonymous said...

How can the courts allow the results of the polygraph test? Didn’t think they did that.

Anonymous said...

So sad that they dragged a big blue behind a boat until it broke in two pieces. The tournaments are contests for less endowed old white men with money.

Anonymous said...

Maybe this will be a lesson learned, and taken to heart. Always do the right thing and conduct yourself and your team honorably.

Anonymous said...

"Anonymous said...

How can the courts allow the results of the polygraph test? Didn’t think they did that.

June 14, 2017 at 7:11 PM"


You are thinking criminal where the results aren't admissible. This was a civil matter. The bottom line in the ruling was the contest rules stipulate passing a poly. The judge basically said the rules are the rules and the contestant agreed to the rules by signing.

Anonymous said...

Glad this is over, it was a dark cloud from the beginning. It's impossible to be at every boat at 8:30 am to monitor fishing lines, so honesty and polygraph are the next best thing, and still not very hard as "evidence" goes, but in this case it was clear not all on the boat knew the rules before the tourney.

Now, what to to with the money? Refund all contestants, or credit the money toward this year's entry fee, or both?

Anonymous said...

I tried to tell you people to stay out of Ocean City. It's political system is corrupt, outrageous, over-priced, over-permitted, over-regulated, even down to the fishing industry. The fishing incident is yet another classical example of a system gone awry.

Anonymous said...

No there for young successful men with jobs so that guys like you can be jealous

Anonymous said...

At least the crew can say that they were the first to get caught cheating in the white marlin open. The polygraph rule has always been a part of the tournament

Anonymous said...

It is specified in the contractual agreement when you sign up for the tournament.

Anonymous said...

Yeah.... You're right. This place is a hell-hole.
Do us a favor: If you stay away (or "out of Ocean City" as you say) it'll make room for one more person. It's too damn crowded as it is. We won't mind losing you, at all.

Anonymous said...

True. AND if you disagree with the findings of the WMO-designated polygraph, you are allowed to have one done on your own.
BUT.... The WMO tester would prevail in all cases.

Anonymous said...

A quick note for any of the 'haters' on this blog:
The WMO does NOT have a horse in the race when it comes to the prize money.
ALL funds are in an escrow account and drawing interest that are awarded totally to the determined winners.
The organizers just want to make sure that they get it exactly right.
No more - no less.

Anonymous said...

thought you can't use polygraph results in court

Anonymous said...

It's not court its a fishing tournament learn to read and pay attention.

Anonymous said...

oc is about the trashiest place in md, actually becoming more like bmore every day! Keep it and enjoy the filth!