Is Online Gambling Legal?
There is some controversy surrounding online gambling. Recently, a federal criminal case was filed against the founders of three of the largest online poker sites, alleging violations of the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act and money laundering. However, this case is still in its preliminary stages. It may soon be settled or dismissed. In the meantime, many Americans are still happy to play online poker. The Internet has become an increasingly popular source of entertainment.
Legalities of online gambling vary between jurisdictions. Many states restrict online gambling, but several countries, including the United States, the European Union, and several Caribbean nations, have legalized it. Before you can gamble online, you must be licensed by a regulating authority. For example, in the United Kingdom, online gambling companies must be licensed by the United Kingdom Gambling Commission.
During the late 1990s, online gambling websites began to gain popularity. By 1997, there were 15 gambling websites and by 1998, there were over 200. A Frost & Sullivan report estimated that online gambling revenues topped $830 million in 1998. In the same year, the first online poker rooms were introduced. However, in 1999, the Internet Gambling Prohibition Act was introduced in the US Senate, which would have banned online gambling for U.S. citizens. Online casino games were also introduced.
France recently proposed new laws that would regulate and tax online gambling. According to budget minister Eric Woerth, the French gambling market would expand to respond to the “Internet reality.” However, online betting will remain illegal for people under 18 years old. In addition, gambling is illegal if you don’t have a gambling license or permit from a licensed company.
Under the Anti-Gambling Law, individuals who engage in gambling may face up to five years in jail for violating the law. This law also applies to owners of illegal gambling businesses who have been operating for more than thirty days, or generate gross revenues of $2,000 in any one day. There is a lot more to online gambling than just playing games.
The federal laws prohibit online gambling operations that use money-laundering methods. The Travel Act also prohibits money laundering through illegal Internet gambling. While Section 1956 has a broad scope, the Act requires jurisdiction based on the telecommunications component, the shipments of goods and services, and debt incurred from gambling.
If you are wondering whether or not online gambling is legal in your state, there are several ways to determine whether it is legal. The Kahnawake Gaming Commission is a regulatory body that regulates gambling activities in the Mohawk Territory. The commission issues licensing for many online poker rooms and casinos. This regulatory authority makes sure that the gaming businesses are fair, and not taking advantage of people.