Several federal criminal statutes have been implicated by the act of illegally gambling on the Internet. One of the most recent cases involved a remote gaming operation in Costa Rica. The case was a clear win for the federal government, and is a good example of how laws at the federal level can reinvigorate state law. However, the law is no panacea, as there are many other factors at play, such as interstate or foreign elements. In fact, state officials have expressed concern that the Internet could be used to bring illegal gambling into their jurisdictions.
The United States Department of Justice’s Internet Gambling: Overview of Issues published in December 2002 includes an informative fact sheet on the subject. It is also worth reading the abridged version of CRS Report RS21984 which includes citations to state gambling laws. There are a number of notable cases, such as the recent prosecution of K23 Group Financial Services for violating the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act. However, it is not the law that will make or break the Internet gambling industry, as much as the federal government’s inability to enforce its own laws.
A recent report from Togel Hongkong the American Banker indicates that the federal government is not as enthusiastic about enforcing its own laws as it may seem. In fact, the Federal Communications Commission, or FCC, has the power to stop the leasing or furnishing of facilities. In addition, the FCC can make rules to address the technologically advanced devices used to conduct illegal gambling on the Internet.
In addition to the FCC’s powers, there are a number of federal statutes that have been implicated by the Internet gambling craze. These statutes include the Travel Act, the Wire Act, the Gambling Devices Transportation Act, the Illegal Gambling Business Act, and the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act or RICO. A recent report from the Government Accountability Office (GAO) also notes that the FCC can use its powers to regulate common carriers, including the Internet. The GAO has also noted that state officials are concerned about the potential impact of the Internet on their jurisdictions. The law is not limited to the Internet, however, and some state officials have made it clear that they will take steps to enforce their own laws.
The Internet gambling craze has also caused the FCC to undertake a number of studies to assess how much the Internet can affect consumer behavior. A recent survey showed that consumers were concerned about Internet gambling, and that a number of consumers are likely to engage in illegal gambling activities on the Internet. The most obvious solution to this issue is to prohibit financial institutions from accepting financial instruments from individuals engaged in illegal Internet gambling. However, the government has taken a different approach by threatening PayPal with prosecution for its role in accepting ads from a Costa Rican internet gambling operation.
There are several other laws that have been implicated by the Internet gambling phenomenon, including the Gambling Devices Transportation Act, the Wire Act, the Illegal Gambling Business Act, the Racketeer Influenced or Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO), and the Consumer Product Safety Commission’s rule on electronic gambling devices.