Online Gambling Laws in the United States
Online gambling refers to the activity of placing and receiving bets over the Internet. It includes casino games, sports betting and virtual poker.
The United States is currently in a legal battle over the regulation of internet gambling. There are two main issues. One is whether the federal government can lawfully prosecute this type of crime, and the other is whether state officials can lawfully regulate this activity.
State officials have expressed concern that the internet could be used to bring illegal gambling into their jurisdictions. The federal government has responded by reinforcing state law in certain cases. However, this seems to frustrate enforcement policies.
Some argue that the Commerce Clause makes it difficult to prosecute this activity. Another issue is the First Amendment. Despite this, some states are attempting to legislate on gambling.
For example, Sporting News agreed to pay a $3 million fine after launching a public service campaign against illegal gambling. Although these attacks have been successful on the basis of the Commerce Clause, they have not been successful in combating the First Amendment.
Another issue is whether the Travel Act applies to Internet casinos. The Travel Act is a law that governs the conduct of players who use interstate facilities for unlawful activities.
In addition to the Travel Act, there are other federal laws that prohibit or limit gambling. These include the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA), 18 U.S.C. 552. This statute prohibits financial transaction providers from accepting financial instruments for illegal Internet bets.