Gambling Commission in Washington State Seizes Computers

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Internet betting site founder Nick Jenkins, who challenged the laws of gambling in his state, claiming his site,, should not actually be defined as gambling, watched as his computers were confiscated and his company seized on Monday by the Washington State Gambling Commission.

On Friday Jenkins had a meeting with the Washington State Gambling Commission. They told him to shut down his site or face the consequences. Jenkins told them he wasn’t going to shut down the site because it was not defined as gambling. They agreed to disagree.

As employees arrived to work on Monday they found the Washington State agents at their Seattle, Washington office. No one was arrested but the agents served the company with warrants for information, papers, and computers owned by the company. Subsequently, the site was also shut down.

“This is ridiculous,” Jenkins said. “I’m going to fight it. I don’t like the heavy-handed state coming down on entrepreneurs.”

In a retaliatory action Nick Jenkins has sought a restraining order against the state. He claims his site gets around the laws of gambling because there is no ‘house’ to gamble against. Players sign up for an account and make bets with other members of the site. Bets at the site are not guaranteed.

“This is an honor-based betting platform,” Jenkins said. “How can you be gambling under a legal definition if you don’t have to pay when you lose?”

Jenkins has said that the gambling commission has lost perspective on which laws it should enforce.

The seizures came on the same day that a lawyer in the state filed a suit against the government claiming their new law that makes gambling online a felony is unconstitutional.

Gambling Centers Shut Down At Six Locations In Texas

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Aces Wired Inc. felt that they had found a grey are in the state laws in Texas that would allow them to operate gambling establishments out in the open. Authorities have been telling them they are wrong.

Several legal battles have been won by Ace recently that have given them the impression they had been correct in their assumption. They were within the legal limitations on gambling in the state, and were doing nothing illegal.

On Wednesday, the issue again resurfaced when authorities raided six of Aces’ locations. During the raids, police confiscated gambling machines and an undisclosed amount of cash.

The company was not pleased with the raids. “We believe the actions taken today are completely without merit and have no legal basis,” said Kenneth Griffith, Aces Wired President, in a written statement.

The grey are for Aces involved the way they rewarded their winning customers. They developed a system where players would use cards, similar to credit cards, to play the slot machines. Players would then receive their prizes through the cards. No money was ever exchanging hands.

The company had gotten so big, that they have recently signed sponsorship deals with both the Texas Rangers and the San Antonio Spurs.

Legal Battle May Resume Between U.S. And Antigua and Barbuda

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The final meeting has been set. The legal battle that has been going on between the United States and Antigua and Barbuda will once again surface in a couple of weeks.

That is unless the two sides can come to some kind of a compromise. Antigua and Barbuda is seeking compensation from the U.S. regarding a trade dispute over Internet gambling companies that register in the Caribbean.

The World Trade Organization has agreed to suspend making a ruling until a June 6th deadline. The two sides have until then to resolve the issue, or else it is back to the legal battle.

The Minister of Finance and Economy Dr. Errol Cort is in the U.S. this week and a Friday meeting is set to try and resolve the dispute. The case has been going on for several years.

It originated back in 2003 when Antigua accused the U.S. of violating trade treaties by not allowing Internet gambling companies that were registered in the Caribbean, to operate within the U.S.

The U.S. got off relatively easy when the WTO awarded Antigua a settlement of $21 million per year for trade sanctions. The U.S. has ignored that decision, however, and faces stiffer penalties by the WTO if the dispute is not resolved.

Gambling Bust in New Jersey Linked To Genovese Crime Family

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Organized crime has been taken a beating by police over the past few months. On Tuesday, another round of organized crime members were rounded up by authorities.

Police served warrants to forty two people with charges that range from money laundering, to racketeering. An illegal gambling ring was the initial target of the investigation.

In August, an investigation began into an illegal gambling ring that was being allegedly run by the Genovese crime family. The investigation lasted for seven months, and when it was complete, police began making the arrests.

The forty two people were arrested and charged with various crimes including money laundering, Distribution of narcotics, racketeering, and promoting gambling.

The gambling ring had four leaders. There were also numerous agents that were running individual betting packages. The agents were making a percentage of what gamblers in their package lost.

The troubling part of the arrests are the amount of government employees that were arrested in the sting operation. Three of them worked in the school system. The other two worked for Bergen County Parks Department, and Kearney department of Public Works.

While arrests have been made, the investigation continues and more arrests are possible in the case.


Australia High Court Rules In Favor of Online Gambling, Betfair

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Australia may have just opened the doors to full fledged online gambling in the country. An Australian High Court ruling was in favor of Betfair, a global online gambling agency.

Western Australia was trying to pass legislation that would have banned Betfair, but the High Court ruled against that legislation, in a decision that could open the door to widespread online gambling.

Not much can be done these days to keep people from spending their hard earned extra money gambling online. Several countries have loosened their stance on online gambling, with the U.S. on the verge of passing legislation to regulate the industry.

The High Court in Australia ruled that the ban on Betfair contravened section 92 of the constitution by imposing protectionist burdens on interstate trade.

The ruling means that Northern Territory bookmakers could soon be advertising in Victoria and NSW, according to gambling law expert, Jamie Nettleton.

The ruling also keeps the worldwide momentum going that has been generated for the online gambling industry. “It’s an inevitable consequence that they probably will be (allowed) in every state across the country,” said Barrie Fletton, Tatts Group Wagering Chief.

Gambling Bill Getting More Attention In Alabama Than Education

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A gambling Bill that was introduced by Senator Myron Penn, has brought to the forefront just how ugly the world of politics can get. The Bill has been stalled in the Senate for weeks, and is threatening to interfere with other issues.

The Governor of Alabama, Bob Riley, fears that if the gambling Bill issue is not resolved, the state runs the risk of the Bill getting in the way of other important issues.

There is a stalemate over the Bill, and it is causing the process of getting to the education budget, to slow down. “We’ve been debating a gambling bill since February and we’ll probably spend less than a day on our education budget, now that just doesn’t make sense,” said Riley.

The gambling Bill is also drawing attention to another problem that politicians have. They hold grudges. If their Bill’s are not passed, they then go on the offensive and take stances against other Bill’s. “If you kick my dog, I’m going to kick your cat,” said Penn.

The implication is that if his Bill does not get passed, him and other supporters of the gambling legislation will vote against any Bill’s from their opponents. That is where the United States is these days with politics.

Politicians voting along party lines, just to retain power. The good of the legislation is very rarely the issue. As the gambling debate rages on in Alabama, education takes a back seat.

Gambling at Bars in Indiana Approved By Senate Committee

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Bars in Indiana have been fighting for the right to be able to offer certain types of gambling in their establishments. That idea became a little bit closer to reality after a Senate Committee vote.

A Senate Committee has voted in favor of allowing certain types of gambling in bars in the state of Indiana. The Bill that would allow for this form of gambling was sent to the Committee but had to be tweaked before they gave it the go ahead.

The Senate Committee changed the oversight of the bar gambling to the Indiana Alcohol and Tobacco Commission. That will be instead of the Indiana Gaming Commission being responsible for overseeing the gambling.

Now that the committee has approved the Bill, it will be sent to the full Senate to be approved. If the Senate gives the O.K., the new form of gambling in bars would then go into law.

Pull tabs are the main gambling form that bar owners have been lobbying for. These tickets are similar to scratch off lottery tickets, but instead of scratching, a person pulls a tab to find out if they have won. The tabs come in boxes of 1,000 or 2,000 cards, and each one must pay off seventy five percent.

The other change that was made by the committee has to do with where the taxed money would go. It will now go to the state government and not to local governments.