Headlines: Poker, Law, and Politics (9/09/06)

Arrest Adds Pressure on Internet Gaming (Houston Chronicle, 09/08/06)
“Cases against offshore betting companies are extremely difficult to prosecute because of the many gray areas _ including poker and casino games _ in the current law that U.S. lawmakers hope to clear up, Rose said…Eight states have laws prohibiting Internet gambling: Washington, Nevada, Illinois, Indiana, Louisiana, South Dakota, Michigan and Oregon. The arrest of Dicks marked the first time one of those states has taken action against one of thousands of big-time online gambling operations. Millions of American players bet an estimated $6 billion per year online, according to industry figures…Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, R-Tenn., says he’s committed to bringing legislation banning Internet gambling to the Senate floor for final passage in the coming weeks.”

TV Debate On U.S. Legal Situation (Online-Casinos, 09/09/06)
“Readers interested in the ongoing U.S. legal situation, especially on the heels of the recent arrests of senior executives in the business, will want to view an ESPN television program on the subject which is to be screened Sunday at 09h30 ET on the program “Outside The Lines”…The U.S. House of Representatives just passed Anti-Online gambling legislation in July which could make playing poker online a crime if it makes it through the U.S. Senate. Also in July, the Justice Department essentially shut down one of the biggest online gaming companies in the world: BetOnSports.”

Q&A : Greg Giordano, gaming attorney at Snell & Wilmer (In Business Las Vegas, 09/08/06)
“There’s one court decision in Louisiana that says the Wire Act covers sports wagering but it doesn’t cover casino games, poker games. That decision isn’t pressing on all districts in the United States. It’s also what Congress wants to do. There’s still a big anti-gaming action that says, “Oh my God, what about the children.” They’re already at computers. People are going to gamble anyway. You aren’t going to be able to stop it. The more astute approach is to regulate it, so that you have some protections and know what the payback percentage is and if you don’t pay, you lose your license…”


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