Do Authorities Have An Online Gambling Double Standard?

Written By Janice Doughtrey

As the battle to legalize online gambling in the United States continues on there are several examples that highlight the fact that there seems to be some kind of double standard at play when it comes to how authority figures deal with this fledgling industry.

The first deals with online poker billionaire Anurag Dikshit who was convicted of one count of violating the federal wire act in 2008. Although this is generally considered to be a very serious offense, U.S. District Judge Jed Rakoff was persuaded to keep the convicted online gambling tycoon out of jail when he agreed to forfeit $300 million in proceeds.

Canadian Douglas Rennick made a similar arrangement with prosecutors last year here in the United States when he agreed to turn over almost $2 million to stay out of the slammer. There is some opposition in the online poker world as to how the law is interpreted however.

PokerStars, one of the world’s largest online gambling sites, insists they are receiving information from American law firms that tell them quite clearly they are not breaking any American laws. It’s becoming apparent that at least the wire act of 1961 isn’t a good legal foundation for American prosecutors as some cases they have resorted to a kind of activities noted above.

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